• “I will lose 25 pounds”
• “I am going to stop eating all junk food”
• “I will go to the gym and workout 5 days per week”
• “I am going to eat way better than I do now”
While all of these statements are desirable and contribute to a long-lasting, healthy life, they are NOT great resolution statements. These resolutions will most likely be abandoned before Valentine’s Day, because they are missing two key words.
1. HOW Most people tend to omit forward thinking as to how they plan on accomplishing a lofty resolution or goal. More often than not, this sets people up for failure from the get-go. Instead of stating “I will lose 25 pounds”, be more specific as to how that will happen. “I will lose 25 pounds in 2015 by omitting all refined sugar from my diet, and walking briskly for 30 minutes, 4 days per week.” The resolution now sounds a lot more realistic. With specific tasks or instruction, a person is much less likely to veer off track when a goal becomes too difficult.
2. WHY Without a reason or purpose, a resolution is nothing but empty words. “I will stop eating all junk food” needs a deeper purpose or meaning, if a person is to actually follow through on turning down chips, soda, or ice cream each time it is offered to them. “I will stop eating junk food, and replace it with healthy alternatives like fruit because I know that will help to lower my cholesterol, and keep me healthy as I grow older.” Giving up junk food now has a much more profound meaning- maintenance of health and wellness- and a person is a lot more likely to adhere when their health is on the line.
Including the “How” and “Why” into your New Years Resolution also forces an internal dialogue prompting exploration into how dedicated you are to a particular goal. If you cannot apply the “How” or “Why” to your resolution, you may want to consider starting from scratch. Think about what is important to you, both today and in the future. Backtrack from that point and create a resolution that has a roadmap and a reason.
Michelle can be contacted at: firstname.lastname@example.org.