Holiday parties have come and gone, the days of procrastination with them. Endless hours of watching old Christmas films and eating "just one more cookie" are, unfortunately, activities of the much-desired past. If your social media feed is anything similar to mine, you would have noticed an influx of posts by friends and influencers reflecting on their #bestof2016 moments and setting both goals and resolutions for 2017!
There is something undeniably exciting about the fresh start to a new year. I, for example, like to shelve my mishaps from the year before and move forward with a clean slate. While good intentions and fancy calendars will help you maintain both goals and resolutions, I know from experience that a long to-do list will making the actual maintaining extremely challenging. If anything, a lengthy list of must-achieves will result in a difficult let down when everything on the list is not successfully checked off.
Regardless where you hope this year will take you—getting around to using that gym pass or traveling more in your free time—there will always be obstacles that make achieving your dreams challenging. Below are 3 simple ways to help you keep your resolutions all year long. Yes, ALL YEAR LONG!
Remember, you can do it!
Realistic Goal Setting
I get it. You just finished the first week of January and you're still excited. Hell, you're energized! Even though I'm all about shooting for the stars, I think it's crucial to remain realistic when setting goals. When I make my goals, I make sure they fit the SMART criteria. The "smarter" your goals, the more likely you'll achieve them.
Specific: A specific goal has much greater chance of being accomplished than a general one. For example: “I want to work on my physical health” is less specific than “I want to start doing yoga weekly to improve my physical health.”
Measurable: Is the goal measurable? Keeping track of your progress gives an incentive to keep going and working towards the goal.
Action Oriented: Can your goal be described as a verb? Outlining the exact steps needed to accomplish your goal will set you up for success from the beginning.
Realistic: Can the goal actually be obtained?
Timely: Can your goal be accomplished by a set date? When you have a set time period in mind you will be more likely to be focused throughout the process.
Progress > Perfection
There is nothing worse than falling off the band wagon three weeks in and resorting back to your old ways. When this happens, you need to cut yourself some slack.
Strive for progress over perfection.
When working towards any goal, there will always be setbacks. It is how you deal with those setbacks that will predict your success. Even if you miss a couple spin classes or inhale too many slices of pizza, you should not give up! Pick yourself up and be resilient. Remember, it is about baby steps. Sometimes it takes going a step backwards to go two steps forward!
Reward, Reward, Reward
Another great way to help keep your resolutions all year long is to form a buddy system. Whether you periodically check in with your friend or a celebrate with mani and pedi every time you regularly exercise, it is important to celebrate and acknowledge all the milestones you reach on your journey!
Whatever you may have in mind for 2017, it is important to remember that all good things take time and effort. With perseverance, your goals can be achieved! Happy New Year and best of luck in 2017!