We’re about two weeks into 2016 now which means many of us are about two weeks into a New Year’s resolution. Anyone else feeling the struggle? It can be tough work sticking to a resolution and sticking to a new wellness regimen can be extra tough. Two weeks ago, getting up at 6am to fit in a jog or cutting out soda didn’t seem that hard to adjust to. Oh boy. Is it too late to go back in time and talk yourself out of it? Yes; it is too late.
Americans are an optimistic bunch and each year 45% of us make resolutions but only 8% of us succeed in meeting our goals. But don’t let that put you off. We’re all in this together and BEFIT is here to help you create habits that stick so you can fulfil your resolutions!
Breaking the Bad Habit Loop
Most people who are embarking on a resolution to get fitter or healthier will likely be trying to change old bad habits rather than eradicate those habits completely. The good news here is that changing an old habit has been scientifically proven to be easier to do than extinguish that habit completely! Human brains are wired to adapt to change – it just takes some work. Since you have enough on your plate already, we have compiled a list of sure-fired ways that will help you create habits that stick.
Creating Habits That Stick
- Motivation Monday – If you have already strayed from your plan or if you stray in the future, you can always get back on track. Should you find yourself in this position, wait for the next Monday and start again. Mondays signal a fresh week which can translate into a fresh start for you and your resolution and research backs up the positive psychological affect Mondays have on people. Plus you can follow #MotivationMonday on Twitter or Instagram to find a virtual support group!
- Make Sure You Have A Plan – After reading our last blog on SMART goal – setting, hopefully you created your own plan with goals. If you haven’t, you should do so pronto. People who have a plan in place to help them fulfil their resolution are more likely to be successful. Without a formal plan, a resolution is arbitrary and undefined. Take time to flesh out your plan. Give your plan life and make yourself review it on a regular basis to make sure you are following it.
- Bite Size Pieces – Feeling like you bit off more than you can chew? That’s ok. It’s not too late to revise how you approach the different elements of your plan. If your plan was to work out for an hour every day, work your way up to it rather than just diving straight in to it. You also don’t have to start every element of your plan on the same day. You may be more likely to achieve your end goal if you introduce parts of your plan incrementally rather than in one big burst.
- Get The Hard Stuff Out Of The Way First – Remember when you were in school and your parents would make you do the homework you were least looking forward to first before you worked on the fun or easy stuff? They had a point. Humans have a limited amount of energy and willpower to spend each day so we need to carefully plan how we use it. If you keep putting off the harder parts of your plan, you may be setting yourself up for failure. Get into the habit of doing the hard stuff first and reward yourself by winding down with the less strenuous elements of your plan.
- Journaling – Keeping a daily diary can be a very meditative process. Commit to writing an entry each day after you have completed your plan for that day and allow yourself time to reflect upon your accomplishments. You can also use the diary as a space to vent your struggles and detail how you cope. Should the same struggle come up again, you now have a resource to help you recover.
- Make It Daily – Even if you don’t exercise each day or if you allow yourself a food cheat day, you should work some element of your resolution into your daily routine. You know what they say – out of sight, out of mind. Keep your plan close to the forefront of your mind so it becomes an active part of your life and not something you simply intermittently partake in.
- Talk To Yourself – It won’t make you crazy. There are lots of benefits to talking to yourself, especially if you combine it with a daily affirmation. Take time out of your day to check in with yourself and remind yourself out loud what it is you want to achieve. Maybe give yourself a pep talk each morning or catch up with yourself midway through your day. You are your own best motivator!
- Have a Role Model(s) – We’re not saying to compare yourself to others but having a role model can help you keep your resolution plan on track. A role model could be someone you personally know who achieved something great or it could be a person you discovered online. People tend to become who they associate with or relate to so a positive role model who has already walked in your shoes can be the best encouragement when it comes to meeting your goals.
Feeling better about your health or fitness shouldn’t be a chore. If you ever need some extra support, come by BEFIT to speak with one of our trainers or simply fill out a Free Consultation Request by clicking the link and a fitness professional will reach out to you within 24 hours.