Tips for Making New Year's Resolutions that Stick
By Abbey Lichten, MPH, CHESHealth and Wellness January 04, 2012
Happy New Year! It is that time of year again, time for millions of Americans to make resolutions – eat healthier, lose weight, stress less. If you are among them, the most important thing you need to know is how to make resolutions that stick. As a Health Education Coordinator for Northwestern Memorial, I know it can be difficult to put good intentions to work so they lead to good results, but I also know it’s possible. Following are a few tips for success:
- Create a very specific, measureable action plan – if you want to shed extra pounds, indicate how much weight you want to lose in one month and what steps you are going to take to accomplish your goal. For example, commit to weighing in weekly, keep a food diary, banish snacks over 100 calories and drink more water. Keep a daily checklist visible as a reminder.
- Be realistic – don’t take on too many things at once. Focus on one goal and support yourself with the tools and resources you need to achieve it. For example: “I will wear a pedometer every day and aim for a minimum of 10,000 steps per day. “
- Surround yourself with a healthy support team – enlist a partner who has similar goals and work to keep each other motivated and accountable.
- Reward yourself for your successes – set small goals leading up to your main objective. Doing so will help you stay on track and keep your eye on the prize. As you reach those small milestones, reward yourself by getting a massage, treating yourself to a new yoga mat, or by enjoying a healthy meal out.