The New Year always signifies new beginnings. We all have high expectations of what the new year and unknown will bring.

What are the 5 most common New Year’s Resolutions?

1) Lose the holiday weight (and probably more)
2) Pay off debt
3) Exercise more/enter a race/get a PR
4) Travel
5) More time for myself (reading a book, yoga)

Why is it so hard to keep your New Year’s resolutions?

How many times have you said, “This year will be different”, only to have the same things happen again and again? What happened to make this past year just like any other year?

The definition of “resolution” is a firm decision to do or not to do something.
How many times have you broken your own New Year’s resolutions?

 

The answer: Because you don’t plan for them.

As much as we would all like to hit the ground running on Day 1, if you haven’t planned for it, you will fail. Think back to your own past Januarys:
Day 1 Get over a hangover.
Day 2 You try to finish all the cookies, sweets and leftovers so the food temptations are out of the house.
Day 3-7, you struggle to get back into a routine with work, school, eating schedules, commute, etc. And somehow you want to introduce more time for yourself, workout routines, meal prepping and reducing debt.

You wouldn’t just jump on a plane to Europe without doing some research on where to stay, where to go, and pricing, would you? So treat your life the same. Do your research, make a plan, slowly introduce things into your routine and you will be successful.

Would it be wiser to start planning in December? Yes, but we all know it’s just not going to happen. With running around getting Christmas gifts, Christmas parties, after Christmas shopping and time with family and friends, having a “plan” would be a Christmas miracle.

 

Take the Time to Make a Plan

Here’s a basic outline of how to plan and implement new ideas into your schedule. Write them down in a notebook or on post-it notes. Make sure you can see your ideas listed on something throughout the day(s). Future posts will go into more in-depth detail.

Day 1 :

Recover from the holidays and write out your resolutions. Finish holiday leftovers (you know you want to!) Start brainstorming what you need to do to accomplish your goals.

Day 2:

Take your ideas and formulate an outline and timeline. You have more success if you make a deadline. Be realistic. You will not lose 10 pounds in a week unless you catch a virus that keeps you on the toilet for multiple days. You also have more success by telling others your new year resolutions. They will hold you accountable.

Day 3:

Prepare for what you need to do by making lists and getting items you need.
Need to pay off debt? Know how much you have, and how much you can pay off per month until it’s gone.
Meal planning? Have a grocery list and go shopping staying mostly along the perimeter of the store. (Most of the processed stuff is in boxes in the middle).
Need to exercise more? Have a training plan and start incorporating your workouts into your schedule even if its just 30 minutes a day or crunches during TV commercials.

Day 4-10:

Try out your new schedule. If you miss something, it’s ok. Find a way to remind yourself or create time. There may be a day or two during the week that you can’t fit something new into your daily routine. This is the time to “know” what works for you.

Day 11-14:

By now you know what is working, and what isn’t. You know when you have time, and when you don’t. You know if you need to set your cell phone for reminders. Your family and friends know not to disturb you during certain times of the week. You’ve created time for yourself and have a better handle on the day.

Day 15:

Today is truly Day 1 for you to start working toward your new year’s goals. You have planned, prepped, and experimented with what works for you. You are ready. You can succeed!
Remember, you will not always have perfect days, but if you plan ahead, you can adapt better to what the world throws at you.

The next few posts will focus more on the details on the top 5 New Year’s resolutions.

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