At this time of year we hear a lot about resolutions. You may be considering whether or not you’re going to make any New Year’s resolutions for 2022. Maybe you’ve made them in the past and started off strong, and lost interest over time. Maybe you never really got started – but the intention was their. Perhaps you are one of the few who buckled down and followed through. Either way, once again it’s almost the beginning of another new year. Even if you’re less than thrilled with your follow through and success (or lack of success) in prior years, each and every new year brings amazing opportunities to challenge yourself.
We all want to be successful, but it seems like we fall into the same patterns over and over. What’s the solution? Although we can’t guarantee success, here are a few tips to help you set your resolutions to be successful in 2022:
First and foremost, select something in your life that’s important to you. One of the keys to choosing your New Year’s resolutions is having goals that truly matter. Ideally, you want to identify something you want more than anything. This will help keep you committed.
Be specific. The whole idea of making a New Year’s resolution can seem over-simplified. You’ll often hear people say, “My New Year’s resolution is to get in to shape.”
Ask yourself, what does the statement, “I want to get in shape,” really mean? Be really detailed – commit to a specific goal or number, such as, “I want to eliminate two inches from my waist and three inches from my hips.” Another example might be “I want to increase visual muscle definition in my abdominals and my upper arms.”
Make your resolution measurable. How will you measure your results? For example, if your resolution is spending more time with your family, it may manifest as, “I plan to work four hours less per week in the coming year,” or “I won’t work on Saturdays, starting January 1st.”
Structure your resolution using mini goals. Consider cutting your overall goal into smaller, separate goals. Select the first mini goal to accomplish in the process and designate it as your New Year’s resolution for the first 3 months. Consider this example: You want to lose thirty pounds. You’ve struggled to drop the weight in the past. But you want to get serious now.
Here’s one way to cut this into mini-goals: Lose 10 pounds in the first 3 months of the year, lose another 10 pounds in the second quarter of the year and drop the final 10 pounds the third quarter of the year. The fourth quarter of the year, plan to focus on maintaining your weight loss.
Be realistic. It might not be possible for you to accomplish everything you want in just one year. But you probably can be well on your way to your goal by the end of the year if your New Year’s resolution is within reasonable standards. Note that reasonable standards don’t mean making it so easy anyone can do it – you need a realistic challenge. Stretch yourself – you can do it. Take your resolution to the point of comfortable discomfort.
So in summary, when selecting your New Year’s resolutions, focus on what matters to you. Be specific and make your resolutions measurable. Use mini goals and be realistic in establishing whatever resolutions you select.
Are you unsure which of your priorities is most important in the New Year? Do you have plenty of dreams for the future, but not many concrete plans?
The majority of New Year’s resolutions focus on health. Check out these fifteen common resolutions that are made by many each year. Choose the ones that speak to you and get ready for a better, healthier you during the next twelve months and beyond.
Resolutions to Improve Your Physical Health
Eat right. Focus on adopting healthy eating habits rather than resorting to crash diets. Learn to eat more slowly and reduce your portion sizes.
Eat a variety of foods with plenty of complex carbohydrates, fresh vegetables and fruits. Add in some lean proteins and healthy fats to complete your meals.
Exercise daily. Aim for at least 30 minutes of moderate movement and aerobic exercise every day. Round that out with training for strength and flexibility. Find a variety of activities that you enjoy, like brisk walks and biking. Consider getting an exercise ball or treadmill that you can use at home on busy days or when the weather outside is unpleasant.
Get adequate rest and sleep. Insufficient sleep can make you more vulnerable to weight gain and many illnesses. Different individuals need different amounts of sleep, but the conventional seven to eight hours is a good rule for most people. If you constantly feel drowsy, try going to bed earlier.
Take care of your bones. Almost half of all women over the age of fifty will suffer an osteoporosis-related fracture. Men can be at risk too. Eat plenty of foods rich in calcium and vitamin D. Get some sunshine and lift weights or do other resistance training.
Practice good posture. Strong abdominal muscles will protect your back from injury and help you look younger. Get used to pressing your navel towards your lower back and keeping your shoulders relaxed. Breathe from your abdomen rather than your chest.
If you smoke or use other tobacco products, quit! You probably already know all the dangers of smoking, including lung cancer and premature aging. Many people make several attempts before quitting for good so be open to various cessation methods. Your medical provider may be able to help you find the right plan for you.
Drink alcohol in moderation or avoid it. Some people may need to avoid alcohol all together. Others can stay safe within the general limits of one drink a day for women and two for men. Avoid alcohol before bed so you get good quality sleep.
Monitor your health. Regular checkups enable early treatment to keep small health issues from growing worse. If you can’t afford health insurance, you may be able to get some free or inexpensive screenings at local pharmacies and health fairs. Don’t discount alternative medicine – it can have many advantages over traditional western style medicine.
Resolutions to Improve Your Mental Health
Manage stress. Keeping stress under control lets you enjoy life more. Set aside time each day for meditation or listening to soothing music.
Build healthy relationships. Develop a strong network of support. Communicate openly and with respect.
Monitor your thoughts. Think positive. Divert your attention away from nonproductive worrying by brainstorming creative solutions to challenging situations.
Practice positive self talk. Be a good friend to yourself. Remind yourself of your strengths and accomplishments.
Be compassionate. Show compassion to yourself and others. Be aware of the suffering in the world and look for ways to alleviate it.
Engage in lifelong learning. Keep your mind sharp by giving it constant challenges. Take adult education classes or listen to foreign language tapes.
Consider counseling. It’s wise and courageous to ask for help when you need it. Professional counseling or spiritual practices may help you bounce back from unfortunate events like divorce or unemployment. They can be useful for smaller things, too, like if you’ve just had a rough week.
So – yay or nay on the resolutions? I hope you’ve picked yay and are ready to get started. By addressing your resolutions as a process rather than just a goal to accomplish and move on from, you’re much more likely to succeed. And when you achieve one goal, you’re more apt to set resolutions and accomplish them in the years that follow. Start this year to make each year your best one ever!
Find your purpose – find your joy!
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Did you find a few more ideas of your own? If so, I’d love to hear about them in the comments, and as always please reach out with your thoughts.