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Every year most of us will make a New Year resolution with the best intentions of sticking with them throughout the new year. Unfortunately, in most cases, these resolutions quickly fail. Then when they fail, we feel horrible and tend to beat ourselves up. Well, there’s no need to do that. Here are a few bullet points that can help you keep your resolutions this year.
- Be realistic with your goals: Don’t set yourself up for failure. You are probably not going to go to the gym everyday for the entire year, or you’re probably not going to lose three dress sizes in the next three months. Instead, set realistic goals. Start out by losing your first 2 pounds the first month, and then 1 pound a month thereafter until you’ve reached your goal. If you look at your goals this way, the resolution doesn’t look nearly as big and overwhelming.
- Think in baby steps: Let’s face it, you’re not going to suddenly stop smoking, eating or biting your nails all at once. These bad habits take time to break. Instead of going “cold turkey”, try saying, “I will cut my cigarette smoking in half by February 1st” or “I will only bite my nails on my right hand for a week, then cut it down to four nails, then three, then two”.
- Offer yourself incentives: Reward yourself when you’ve reached that small goal. So, if you were successful in not having a cigarette for a three hours, reward yourself with something you like, like a new pair of shoes or a new purse. It’s important to remember that you shouldn’t reward yourself with a cigarette because you didn’t have one for three whole hours! That would be contrary to the goal.
- Pick a buddy: It’s always fun to work out or diet with a friend. Having a buddy share your goals is always a good support system for you and for your buddy. And words of encouragement from your buddy can also be uplifting and positive.
- Pick something you can control: Are you reaching for a goal like getting a job or getting married in 2012? These types of resolutions are risky. What if you don’t meet Mr. Right this year or what if you get cut from the pool of candidates that interviewed for that job you wanted so badly. These are the types of goals that you really cannot control.
- Be tough: Don’t beat yourself up. Have you ever heard of the saying, “two steps forward, one step back”? If you decide to cheat and have that second cookie or piece of cake, it’s alright. Don’t let the bad feeling spiral into a circle of feeling defeated and depressed. Just pick yourself up and say, “ok, I had a little slip which is ok and not a big deal”. Then look forward and get back on track.
I hope these pointers have encouraged you to make the right choices. Good luck and happy New Years Resolutions!