Better known as “a burst of inspiration and motivation to change your life but quickly dies out before January is over,” New Year’s resolutions have a bad rap. However, every year the majority of people tend to make a few goals to steer their life in the right path. Maybe people are just doing it wrong. As a writer and list-maker, I love making my New Year’s resolutions and I’ve learned a thing or two over the years. Actually, I’ve learned more about what doesn’t work, than what does.
1. Don’t make UNREALISTIC goals.
Don’t say “I’m gonna lose 150 pounds,” because unless you’re going under the knife in some sort of plastic surgery, the chances of you sticking to that over-acheiving mission is slim to none. If your goal is to lose weight, start smaller. The thrill of dropping those pounds will keep you going. Which brings me to my next point…
2. Make each goal MEASURABLE.
A huge mistake most people make is they leave their specific goals open-ended: “Eat healthier.” A better way of maximizing results is to be specific like: “Only go out to eat once a week,” or “Eat a grapefruit every morning.” That way you have a clear path and you know if you accomplished that goal or not. More importantly, you know if you’re cheating. If you eat out more than once a week, you failed to stick to your goal & if you eat a grapefruit every morning, you succeeded. You need your results to be easily measured, otherwise it’s easy to find loop holes and justify ways around your wish-list.
3. Focus on more than one area in your life.
Its more inspiring to stick to your resolutions when you have a bigger outcome from small steps. As for my resolutions this year, I have put them on a much smaller scale of time: 40 Days and 40 Nights. This is because I’m participating in Paleolover’s 40 Day 40 Night Challenge starting January 1st. “It is said to take 30 days to make a habit, so why don’t we kill the 30 make and make it 40?”-Brittany Umstead. Each participant has to send in a list of measurable goals so they stay accountable. Here is my own resolutions list & guide to making your own, whether its a year-long resolution or 40 days:
Ayla’s New Year’s Challenge
For the Belly –> In this section I am focusing on what I should and should not consume.
*No sugar or flavored creamer in my morning coffee.
*Eat Paleo restricted dinners 3 times a week.
*No alcohol or pop (soda, coke, whatever).
For the Body –> Here, I’m focusing on fitness and physical health.
*Complete the “30 Day Shred” workout video with Jillian Michaels, starting Jan. 2nd.
*Take the dogs an extra block every morning.
For the Soul –> This is where I tend to my spirituality and emotional well-being. (This list should be your longest.)
*Wake up by 8:30 a.m. every morning. No if’s and’s or but’s.
*Do yoga every morning that I’m alone.
*Either go to church every Sunday or have a service of our own at home.
*Write a blog post once a week. (Now you can keep me accountable on that one)
*No “fat talk” about myself no matter what. Only helpful & positive criticism.
*Have a cup of tea every day.
For the Bank –> Because it’s always in pain.
*Create a budget and follow the Dave Ramsey’s Envelope System. & stick to it.
“It’s not hard to decide what you want your life to be about. What’s hard, she said, is figuring out what you’re willing to give up in order to do the things you really care about.”
― Shauna Niequist