It’s that time of the year again. Gym memberships are signed, junk food is thrown away, and the phrase “New year new me” can be heard from all over. It’s great to create goals and resolutions, but how many times have you vowed to make a change only to feel disappointed two weeks later when something gets in the way of you keeping that goal? When it comes to health goals, most people usually base them on unrealistic expectations and set themselves up for failure. There are many reasons why people don’t stick to their resolutions including setting too many or setting overly ambitious goals.
For instance, if you vow to quit sugar when you haven’t already been making small changes to improve your diet- you’re most likely setting yourself up for disappointment. While you might initially feel inspired by setting huge goals for the new year, the luster of these resolutions fades quickly when you realize how difficult they are to keep. Small, incremental lifestyle changes may feel less exciting, but they have a much better chance of creating real change. Moderating your resolutions could be the difference between giving up in February and creating a lasting lifestyle change. Resolving not to eat something any more, such as red meat, may not be the most practical goal. Instead you might make a goal to only indulge in a burger once a week, or cut your meat portions in half and add more vegetables to your plate.
Being realistic doesn’t have to mean compromising on your goals. You can work up to eliminating a certain food completely, or make a new habit an everyday one. When resolutions are too ambitious, we struggle to change our habits, become discouraged, and give up all together. So instead of making hardline resolutions this year, strive to make attainable, realistic goals and you will have a much better chance of creating a positive lifestyle change.