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Top New Year’s Resolutions and Tips for Surviving Them

The start of a new decade is the perfect time to take your health more seriously. So, what will you do to finally regain control of your body and lifestyle in 2020 and beyond?

No two people are the same, which is why you need to find the right solutions for you. Here are some of the most common steps that can help you transform your life for the better.

It’s almost the New Year and that means (amongst other things) New Year’s resolutions. It’s a proven fact that we’re more likely to keep up our good intentions when we’re at the start of something, which is why the beginning of the year (and a Monday) is the best time to put a new habit in place. But it can be difficult to know exactly where to start. We might have all the best intentions – lost weight, get fit, start practicing mindfulness – but without some rock-solid goals, it can be hard to keep momentum going. Specificity is key when it comes to making resolutions. So read on for some of the most popular resolutions – and hacks for how to keep going with them.

Improve Fitness

OK, so this one sounds super basic, but we’re saying don’t make just improving fitness your resolution. Instead, pick something that you want to achieve and strive for that. Do you want to be able to run 5k without stopping? How are you going to do this? Break down what you want your fitness goal to look like. So, if you were planning to set a goal for running, you might want to start by looking into apps and online resources which can help you.

Especially if it’s a new exercise to you, it’s important that you put measures in place to prevent injury. This might be buddying up with someone who’s used to the sport, or just reading about it online. Whatever you do, make sure you’ve done your homework. After that, it’s about breaking it down into a week-by-week plan. If your general fitness goal is to increase flexibility, what specifically will you do each week to do this, and are there targets you can give yourself? You might practice spine rolls every day until you can touch your toes and then put a new goal in place. However you do it, making a plan for your fitness goals and sticking to it is the best way to keep this resolution.

Lose Weight

This is another one that’s just too vague to be any use. Is there a habit that you can break which will help you with this? Cutting down a weekly takeout to a monthly one will help you drop a few pounds and is a great first step. What about setting twelve, manageable weight-loss targets for over the course of the year? It’s easiest to form a new habit at the beginning of a time period, so if you begin something on the first of January, then every month after, you’re far more likely to stick to them. Alternate easy and more challenging resolutions for the best chance of success. For example, if you regularly drink the recommended two litres of water per day (although more is never a bad thing), then one month you could set doing that in stone as your target. But the next month, make it something more challenging – if you have a soft spot for sugary syrups in your coffee or muffins and cookies then treating these as a weekly, rather than daily treat might be more difficult. Keeping a diary of your achievements as well as a calendar for your next goal will help you stick to your guns and you’ll find the weight is dropping off in no time.

Be Healthier

This is something so many of us want to achieve, but being bombarded with images, adverts and articles from the internet on a daily – or sometimes hourly – basis about taking up yoga, mindfulness, HIIT workouts, veganism, meditation, no alcohol vs a glass of wine a day, can be completely overwhelming and leave you wondering where to start. Generally speaking, we all know if we have an unhealthy habit that we want to break or, instead, a healthy one that we want to take up. The new year is a great time to start this. Rather than coming up with something vague and impossible to stick to, like ‘Look after teeth better,’ think about what it is you want to achieve and the steps for how to get there. If, for example, dental hygiene is what you hope to improve, then finding a good dentist might be your first step. If you want to hit the twice-a-day brushing recommended for all adults and children, but know this isn’t something you do regularly, then make that your target for the week or month, rather than introducing a lengthy dental hygiene routine that you’ll be unable to keep up.

Making your targets proportionate to your life and manageable is key. There’s no point making a resolution to do yoga every day if you’ve never practiced before and have a busy, nine-to-five job and kids to take care of. Instead, think about what might actually work for you and your life. Maybe it’s a yoga class once a week, instead of a daily home practice. You’ll meet new people and have the motivation of the teacher (and the money you paid) to keep you going. Setting resolutions for yourself that are too high will only cause you to be unsuccessful and feel like you’ve failed. Remember, you can always raise the bar as you go along if you feel like you need a bigger challenge.

Some Tips for Success

So, once you’ve broken your resolution down into manageable steps and have started on your path to self-improvement, you might want to consider sharing with a friend (one-on-one, not via a general social media post) who’s making a resolution too. You can keep each other motivated that way. Do one thing at a time – if you’re starting the first step of six different resolutions all on the first of January, you’re likely to feel overwhelmed and give up. Instead, take a step-by-step approach and divide your time and how you’re going to progress. If you make a calendar covering when you’ll start each step of your resolution(s) then you won’t feel the pressure of trying to do everything at once.

Self-improvement can be difficult, but with perseverance and time management, things you once thought of as impossible will soon become your everyday.

No two people are the same, which is why you need to find the right solutions for you. Here are some of the most common steps that can help you transform your life for the better.

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john bartlet

Tuesday 2nd of March 2021

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