Michelle Heffernan reports
It’s that time of year again- out with the old and in with the newer, better versions of ourselves. According to a ComRes poll for Bupa UK, 80% of new year’s resolutions will have evaporated by March. If you’ve made the resolution to become fitter, lose weight or improve cardiac health-and you’re really serious about keeping it-then follow these guidelines to the happier, healthier you
1. Confidence is Key
As with any mental or physical challenge, it’s all about attitude. Many of us set out on the wrong foot entirely by focusing on all of our flaws. Beating yourself up for the holiday indulgence won’t help you in your ambition to lose weight, exercise or cut out the treats. Instead begin the New Year by focusing on the positive. It is recommended you make a list of all of your successes in the previous year. What were your achievements-small or large, and what are you proud of? Write down a time you were brave, fearless or admirable. This is your pep talk for 2019 and will help you enter the resolutions arena, head held high and with your eyes on the prize.
2. Think SMART
We have all over-estimated ourselves by making resolutions that are too big, and just too unrealistic. Keep resolutions achievable by making goals that are S.M.A.R.T. This means your goal is specific, measurable, achievable, results-focused and time-bound. For example making a goal to lose weight is a bad idea. It is much too vague. Instead a goal to walk 30 mins twice a week for February would be better. This is unambiguous (specific), can be tracked by a diary/fitness tracker (measurable), is a realistic expectation (achievable), is focused on a healthy habit (results focused) and is focused on a time frame (time bound). You can read more about SMART goals for yourself, business or career online.
3. Make Resolutions POSITIVE
If you have read “The Secret” or similar literature, you may have heard of the “law of attraction”. Put simply, this involves attracting positive events in your life through positive words, thoughts and visualisations. This same technique can be applied to your fitness goals from the outset. For example, promising you WILL take a dance class, or you WILL eat one vegetable a day, is much more effective than resolving you WILL NOT do something. Using a statement in the positive, rather than the negative is considered more likely to result in positive change.
4. Garner Support
Even batman had a sidekick. Not to mention a basement of gadgets! To achieve a goal, no matter how big or small, we all need help. This can come in many forms, from professional to personal. Seeking professional advice on a, fitness programme, food regime or new active hobby is a wonderful way to work out the best path to achieving your goal. Confiding in a family member or close friend is equally instrumental, asking he/she to cheer you on, check in with you and help you pick yourself up again when you fall off the wagon. Finally, technology has become pivotal in improving performance across all sectors. For fitness/weight goals, wearbale technologies like Fitbits are fantastic, while apps for goal setting such as GoalsOnTrack or Coach.Me are wonderful for making and keeping new habits.You can do it!