By: Connor Davies ’14, Public and Community Health, CRS Communications Assistant
A short while ago, we featured a post with ideas for New Year’s Resolutions in all 6 dimensions of wellness.
Now, almost a month into the New Year, many of us may still be looking for a place to start. But the delay and frustration doesn’t have to result in a New Year’s Resolution fail.
A study from the University of Scranton found that only 8% of people who make resolutions are successful in achieving or maintaining them.
Why are New Year’s resolutions are so hard to maintain or start?
Often people will make a Resolution because they feel like they have to, not because they want to.
The first step of making lasting and successful change is intrinsic motivation.
In other words, you’ll have better luck making a change because you want to, not because you feel like an arbitrary date on a calendar tells you to.
We’re here to propose something different. Let’s take the “re-” off resolutions and start making personal solutions.
Solutions for wellness challenges you might be facing can be made any time of the year.
The key is to find something you really want to attain and make sure it is something you can maintain.
A goal of completely cutting sugar out of your diet or making sure every single surface in your home is dusted twice a day can be detrimental because you are almost doomed to abandon it due to burn out and resentment.
Solutions that ease you into change are much more likely to succeed and become part of your everyday routine.
Take a new approach. Set goals that allow a little wiggle room such as only 3 sweets a week or making two days a week your cleaning days.
Goals with a Capital G
Goals with a capital G like losing 30 pounds or learning a new language are often harder to accomplish because they can take months or even years to see results. When we don’t see instant or timely gratification we can lose our motivation and stop trying.
This doesn’t mean Goals aren’t worth striving for, but you’ll be more likely to succeed if you break down your Goal in to several smaller goals.
Think of these smaller goals as milestones you can meet in just a couple of weeks.
Build upon your incremental success until your reach your Goal.
In the end remember that any day is a good day to make the change in your life that YOU want to make.
Be good to yourself. If you slip a little, that’s OK. Celebrate small successes and remember that even the greatest accomplishments start with one small step.