A new year brings a fresh opportunity to creating a new you. Setting a resolution can be frustrating if your expectations are too high. Continue reading for great tips on getting started, trouble shooting obstacles, and keeping the elusive New Year’s resolution!

If you cannot see what you want or know how you will get there, then it is difficult to succeed.

Make your goals SMART to stay focused.


Who, What, When, and Where?
Instead of: I want to feel less stressed.
Try: I want to lower my stress level from 7 out of 10, to a 2 when I come home from work.


Establish concrete criteria to measure progress.
Instead of: I want to eat better.
Try: I will eat 5 smaller meals during the work week.


Take a step forward, no matter how small it may seem.
Instead of: I want to lose weight by exercising more.
Try: I will lose 10 pounds by walking three times a week, for 20 minutes.


Choose an action that you feel confident pursuing, not one that feels like a major challenge, or chore.
Instead of: I want to cut out all processed snacks.
Try: I will substitute fresh fruits and vegetables for my snack twice, next week.


A goal should be grounded with a time frame. There should be a sense of urgency in achieving it.
Instead of: I want to be in shape for summer.
Try: I will be satisfied with my fitness level by May first.


Look back and be curious.

It is a good practice to take stock of the past year. Taking notice of the previous calendar year means to prompt reflection on your readiness to change and to seek out new challenges. In days gone by, there is much to learn!

Some questions to ask yourself:

  • What worked out for you?
  • What didn’t work? Why?
  • What did you do well?
  • What could you do better?
  • What can you continue giving your energy to, and what can you cut out?
  • What have you learned about yourself or your situation?


Plan Your goals. If you create realistic attainable goals before you begin, then you are more likely to achieve them. Planning ahead will allow you to foresee future obstacles. Taking the time to create a strategy is the major difference between those who achieve their goals and those who do not.
Believe in Yourself. Tell yourself that you can do it! Know that you have enough discipline to overcome any obstacle ahead. Having confidence and the knowledge that you can achieve your goals will increase your chances of success.
Tell someone. Tell your family, a friend, or a co-worker that you are about to embark upon a new journey. You are more likely to stick to your plan and achieve your goals.
Reward Yourself. When planning your goals, design a reward system for when you achieve
milestones. If your goal is to eat healthier, reward yourself with a low fat dessert.  If you worked out everyday last week, take one night off to relax. Rewarding yourself is important, but keep in mind how you reward yourself. Create rewards that will keep you focused and motivated, not sabotage your efforts.

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