New Year's resolutions have a reputation for being hard to achieve, but people have a tendency to make them every winter anyway. For a majority of people, those resolutions fall by the wayside before the spring season hits, just to be tackled again the following New Year. However, success is possible when it comes to resolutions to improve your physical or mental health and the spring season is the perfect time to make adjustments and try again.
Recommit to New Year's resolutions by reassessing and strategizing
Fox 4 KC notes that it is not unusual for those who make New Year's resolutions related to their physical fitness or mental health to falter by late January or mid-February. Most fitness centers and gyms are packed at the beginning of January, but the crowds typically thin out within a matter of weeks. If you are ready to recommit to your resolutions to create a healthier life, tackle things in manageable pieces rather than try to overhaul your entire life at once.
As you approach your resolutions with a renewed determination, take stock of what did or didn't work the first time you set these goals. For example, if you want to become more fit and exercising is new to you, break the overall goal of working out into small pieces and consider trying new activities if you had a hard time committing the first time. Trying a group class, hiring a personal trainer, or finding a workout buddy are great ways to get motivated and stay committed, as then there's someone else helping to keep you accountable.
Write down a specific plan and focus on the positives
New Year's resolutions related to healthier eating can feel overwhelming in the early stages. There are numerous benefits to eating a cleaner diet, but trying to tackle it all at once can be a recipe for failure. Vogue suggests putting together a specific plan and focusing on positive steps rather than negatives. Detail what you will gain by achieving your goals instead of looking at the resolutions in negatives ways, such as spelling out what you're trying to avoid. For example, rather than dictate that you will cut out junk food, set a smaller goal to eat at least three servings of fruits and vegetables a day.
Take the time to assess your progress along the way and make adjustments as needed. Try not to be too hard on yourself if your progress isn't as steady as you'd like, as forming new habits and ditching bad ones can be a challenging process. Huffington Post notes that it's important to make time to work on achieving your resolutions, and people often feel as if they simply don't have time to exercise or make healthy eating choices. Schedule time to work on your goals just as you would schedule anything else that is a priority and set dates to work toward in accomplishing goals that you set.
Succeeding with health and fitness resolutions brings big benefits
People have varying reasons for setting New Year's resolutions related to health and fitness, but there is no doubt that creating a healthier life will improve not only your physical health, but your mental state as well. The American Psychological Association indicates that physical activity improves your mood not just in the short-term, but exercise makes a significant impact on long-term issues such as depression too. The benefits that you feel from exercise and positive dietary changes can go a long way toward combating not only depression, but issues such as stress, anxiety, and even addiction as well.
When your enthusiasm for your New Year's resolution fades, take a step back to evaluate your goals and develop a strategy to tackle and conquer them. The spring season can be a great time to work toward health and fitness changes and succeeding with those resolutions is possible with some strategic planning. Sort through the specifics regarding what did or didn't work, break your objectives into manageable goals, and reap the rewards to both your physical and mental health when you experience success.
**Paige Johnson loves offering her advice on weight lifting and strength training. She is part fo the team in Learnfit.org where they are dedicated to sharing their passions.