Every year, millions of people make New Year’s resolutions hoping to spark some positive change. The perception that we are NOT where we could be or should be in any area at any given time is a prevailing thought throughout the year, but somehow the new year puts extra pressure on us to make the changes we were not able to make in the middle of the 12 months prior. As if the new number and the turn of a calendar page has greater power to move us in the direction of our dreams quicker or more efficiently, we resolve to change our ways and live up to our full potential in the coming year. Let’s do it again this year!
The recurring themes each year include a more active approach to health and fitness, improved finances, and learning new things for personal and professional development. Chances are, more than a couple of the top 10 most common resolutions will look familiar to you from your own lists in times past or maybe there are some great ideas here for you in 2022!
1. Exercise more
2. Lose weight
3. Get organized
4. Learn a new skill or hobby
5. Live life to the fullest
6. Save more money / spend less money
7. Quit smoking
8. Spend more time with family and friends
9. Travel more
10. Read more
Decide, Document, and Declare!
Studies show that if we choose a goal, write it down, and tell others about it that we are more likely to do it (for a few weeks anyway)! The first week we are off and running, the second week we skip or miss a day or two, then reschedule our “start” for a Monday or postpone our restart for the following month if we are already too close to the end of the current month! There is nothing magical about the 1st of anything, but somehow it just feels right to our minds. If a client confesses to me, “I missed my workout today.” I may say something like, well, there’s still time!
What is the definition of resolution?
1) A firm decision to do or not to do something.
2) The quality of being determined or resolute.
Many people even make resolutions to never make annual resolutions again. Since the truth is that despite the best of intentions, once the glow of a fresh new year wears off, many people struggle to make good on their plans. According to a study published in the Journal of Clinical Psychology, only 46% of people who make New Year’s resolutions were successful. That means over half of the people who set a goal for the new year will fail. But what if you are in the 46% who succeed? Those are great odds! You will achieve more if you try than if you don’t try!
If you need more statistics, here they are! The study also involved non-resolvers: people who did not make a New Year’s resolution, but had a goal they wanted to achieve that year. Only 4% of non-resolvers were successful at achieving their goals, a far bleaker result than those who did make a New Year’s resolution, so decide, document and declare in order to even have a chance at being in the 54% of people who succeed, or end up in those not making resolutions which guarantees a 96% chance of failure!
I hope you are with me among the group who lives by the motto: “If at first you don’t succeed, try, try, try again.” And not with others who identify more with the motto: “If at first you don’t succeed, destroy all of the evidence that you tried.”
“Better to have tried and failed than to have never tried at all.” ― Sean-Paul Thomas
Don't forget, you only fall off a bike when you stop pedaling. As far back as the late 19th century it was determined that many people failed in their endeavors, not because they lacked intelligence or courage, but because they did not organize their energies around the objective. This is why goals and action steps are a big part of the partnership between Wellview Care Team members and our participants. First, you can’t manage what you don’t or won’t measure. We set 3-month goals and then build realistic action steps that can lead us to the goal.
Setting and following these resolutions can improve your abilities to reach your better self in the coming year. The new year presents a great opportunity to build a better future for your health and wellness. Self-improvement is a never-ending process and setting resolutions can be a great way to kick-start your journey, but to make sure you can stick with your goals for more than a month, ensure they are realistic and measurable, write them down, and partner with a member of the Care Team.
1. Focus your goal on what you can become, rather than on what you can do. Become healthy, energetic, strong, and fit.
2. Focus your action steps on what you can do to become that version of you! Set specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and time-bound action steps to achieve that goal such as "over the next 2 weeks, I will get up at 6am each morning to add a 30-minute walk on the treadmill on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays."
3. Focus on improvement, not perfection, in all areas – especially in the areas where you are less strong.
4. Learn new skills that can support the areas you are working on. For example, if you are trying to eat more vegetables (and I hope you will), resolve to cook at home 70% of the time, get recipes from realhealthyrecipes.com, take a cooking class, or order a meal kit to arrive weekly.
5. Buy some new tools that can help you grow, gain confidence, and stay motivated as you work towards your goal. Invest in some good kitchen pans, fitness equipment, running shoes, or trekking poles!
6. Plan to spend more time with those who are like-minded in your pursuit of health and wellness. Join a walking club.
7. Celebrate all wins along the way! As you set and achieve an action step for 2 weeks, reward and reset! Reward yourself with something that continues to build joy in the journey to wellness – new yoga pants, a manicure, a cookbook. Then reset the action step for another 2 weeks, where after 30 days your reward gets bigger and better – a massage, golf shoes, or a Bosu ball. Keep it going to get a smart watch, a blender, or a day trip.
8. Learn to positively deal with setbacks and refuse to quit. Quitters never win, and winners never quit. Modify if you need to, but don’t quit. If you struggle, ask for help, fight to find a solution, and restart as often as needed, but don’t wait until next year, the first of the month, or even tomorrow. Do what you can do TODAY.
9. Love and respect yourself now as you become a better, healthier, stronger, and wiser version of yourself. You are well worth the time, attention, and investment!
10. Have fun on the journey to your destination but take the backroads and enjoy life along the way. The interstate may get you there faster, but you sure miss a lot of beautiful scenery along the way.
If you've reached the end of this article, go back, and look at the Top 10 New Year's resolutions. All of the items on that list are not things to buy or promotions to achieve, or ladders to climb. They all relate to living a better life, not having better things.
Blessings to your 2022 and beyond!
Click HERE to learn more about the Wellview services available to you. We can’t wait to work with you!
– Stephanie Wolfe, NBC-HWC
Health Advisor | Email Stephanie