Happy New Year! This is the time of year when we turn over a new leaf, making resolutions designed to transform us into the person we desire to be. How many times have you made a resolution only to go back to your old ways by Groundhog's Day? I have, many times over. The trick I have learned is to focus on creating healthy habits rather than focusing on changing something I don't like about myself.
So how do you make lasting habits? By starting with intention, identifying obstacles and support systems, and setting a plan in place. I use the following 9 questions both with myself and with nutrition clients to hone in on goals and plans to accomplish those goals. So grab a pen and paper and let's get started!
- What are your goals and aspirations for 2017?
- Why do you want to achieve these goals?
- What steps have you taken towards these goals already?
- What obstacles have prevented you from achieving these goals in the past? Circle the ones that are still relevant. List any current obstacles not already circled.
- What obstacles have prevented you from starting new habits in general in the past? Circle the ones that are still relevant. List any new obstacles not already circled.
- What obstacles have prevented you from sticking with new habits in the past? Which ones are still relevant? List any current obstacles not already circled.
- Looking at the current obstacles identified in questions 4-6, what steps can you take to prevent or mitigate these hurdles?
- Will your friends and family be supportive of you making the changes listed in question 7?
- Who will be most supportive?
You now have the basic outline for a plan to take your resolution and turn it into a lasting habit. What next? Identify monthly, weekly, and daily ways to incorporate steps towards your resolution, making it part of your life. Want to make a dietary change this year but not sure where to start? Schedule a free 15-minute introductory meeting with me to determine if I can help you meet your goals.