10 Jan Make Your New Year Goals Stick in 2017
Well, I’m about to get really busy. Where were ya’ll in December ;). As a Nutrition Coach with fourteen years of experience coaching thousands of clients, I have learned that the New Year means everything to someone who is ready to make a change and get in shape. According to stats, 40% of us make New Year resolutions and “losing weight” or “getting in shape” is often at the top of the list. The crappy part is only 8% of us will follow through on our New Year resolutions. Only 8%. Why?! Again, this is where fourteen years of experience working with humans kicks in. I think I have some answers.
In my opinion, the answer is twofold. First, I believe that we set goals for ourselves that sound good but that we really don’t want badly enough. And second, we create goals that aren’t specific enough with no real plan to make them happen. Though I can’t promise that you will achieve your goals if you follow my plan below, I can promise that you have a much, much better shot at success if you do!
I’ve made resolutions that I’ve stuck to and ones that I haven’t. For example, I often make the goal to stop biting my nails (gross, I know.) And I follow through for about a month or two. But inevitably I go back to biting my nails. Why? Truth is, I just don’t care enough. Yes, I would love to have perfectly manicured nails, but it’s not enough of a priority to me to stick with it. On the flip side, at the start of 2016 I made the goal to eat cleaner and choose all natural carbs like fruits and veggies over processed ones so I could feel better and cut body fat. And I’ve stuck to it. Clearly, improving my health and getting in better shape was an actual priority to me because I’m still going strong a year later.
The point is, if you’re going to create a resolution for the New Year, ask yourself, “Do I really want this bad? Am I willing to make sacrifices to make it happen? Is achieving this goal honestly a priority to me?” My advice? If it’s not, wait to make the goal at another time. The New Year is really just a day on the calendar like any other. It’s better to wait until you’re actually ready and really want something than to set yourself up for failure and feel bad. Guess my nails will just have to wait 🙂
If you’ve determined that you are really truly ready to make sacrifices to achieve your goal, the next step is whittle down that lofty goal you have in your mind to a very specific attainable goal. And then create a plan to make it happen.
Create Small Goals to Support the Big Goal.
For example, the goal of “I’m going to lose 50 pounds!” is a great one! But it’s a long term, big picture kind of goal that can feel very overwhelming once the novelty of the New Year wears off. And we all know where that leads; failure. So let’s break it down, make it specific and come up with a plan to actually make it happen.
The big picture goal of losing 50 pounds is in desperate need of some specific, attainable and smaller goals to help it come to fruition. It’s also very important to take your lifestyle and time constraints into account. Here are a few short term, specific and attainable goals that support the larger goal.
- I will to the gym 4 times a week after work.
- I will go to the grocery shopping and prep food in bulk one day per week.
- I will replace processed carbs like bread and crackers with unprocessed, all-natural fruit, veggies, salads, sweet potatoes and brown rice instead.
See how “I will go to the gym 4 times per week after work” is much less daunting than “I’m going to lose 50 pounds!” Heading to the gym (or exercising at home or indoors before or after work etc.), in this example, is certainly doable if you make it a priority. If every day the goal swirling around in my head was to lose 50 pounds or just “get in shape”, I would be terrified. But If I create and commit to a workout four times a week on my terms, it’s not so scary.
Notice too how if you achieve these smaller goals, they inevitably lead you to your big picture goal. Basically, if you work out and prepare healthy food, it’s only a matter of time before you lose the 50 pounds!
Next, Make a Plan.
For example, if your goal is to go to the gym four days a week after work, it takes some planning to make this work with your lifestyle. Maybe you need to pack a gym bag every night for the next day. Or maybe you need to buy some workout sneakers ASAP. Or maybe you need to pass off some chores that you typically take care of after work to another family member. If your goal is to eat cleaner carbs, then you need to add these to your shopping list and make it a priority to go to the market weekly to always have extra fruits, veggies etc. on hand. The point is you need to really think about how you can make this new goal work in your already too busy lifestyle. How can you make it easier? How can you make it happen? What will it take? Write those answers down and consider them your plan of action.
Need Some Help?
If you’ve tried to get fit in the past and have struggled with motivation, staying on plan or you simply have given up out of frustration (I get it- there’s so much misinformation out there about what you should be doing), you’ll likely be more successful with a coach. I’m currently taking on only a handful of nutrition clients for two month packages. I only take on a handful at a time so I can dedicate as much time and attention as each client needs to reach their goals. If you’re interested, you can email me at Valerie@valeriecogswell.com or contact me here and we can set up a quick call to go over your goals and the program and see if it’s a fit for you and your lifestyle.
Again as a professional in this industry for fourteen years, I have learned that you are stronger than you think. I have learned that we spend so much time creating excuses for ourselves when what we really need to do is get the heck out of our own way. If you want something, go get it. Period.
Happy New Year friends!