Stick to Your New Year’s Resolutions

By: Ashmar Mandou

Lawndale News Chicago's Bilingual Newspaper - Local NewsAre you ready to prioritize your well-being in the New Year? We know life can be challenging with work commitments, family activities, daily errands, etc. that it is imperative to stick to a realistic approach when it comes to curating a new lifestyle routine. We are sharing a few tips to help you stick to your goals to make 2024 the best year, yet.

Start Small
Make resolutions that you think you can keep. If, for example, your aim is to exercise more frequently, schedule three or four days a week at the gym instead of seven. If you would like to eat healthier, try replacing dessert with something else you enjoy, like fruit or yogurt, instead of seeing your diet as a form of punishment.

Don’t Beat Yourself Up
Perfection is unattainable. Remember that minor missteps when reaching your goals are completely normal and OK. Don’t give up completely because you ate a brownie and broke your diet, or skipped the gym for a week because you were busy. Everyone has ups and downs; resolve to recover from your mistakes and get back on track.

Control What You Can, Not What You Cannot
Research shows that feeling in control helps when managing stress and goals that are impossible will only create anxiety. When you’re setting goals, use the SMART formula. SMART stands for specific, measurable, attainable, realistic and time-bound. Here’s an example: I will go for a 10-minute walk around the block, every weekday, after lunch.

Change One Behavior at a Time 
Unhealthy behaviors develop over the course of time. Thus, replacing unhealthy behaviors with healthy ones requires time. Don’t get overwhelmed and think that you have to reassess everything in your life. Instead, work toward changing one thing at a time.

Create a Vision Board
A vision board is simply creating a compelling statement of who you are and what health-promoting, life-giving behaviors you want to practice consistently. Research has shown that self-change is a staged process. We move from not thinking about changing a behavior, to thinking about it, to planning to change, and then testing out ways to do it before we actually start.

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