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New Year’s Resolutions Not to Make

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We’re all making a list and checking it twice about some changes we’d like to make in the new year. Most of us will not succeed. I know. I’ve done it over and over again and if there’s one thing I’ve learned it’s to not have such lofty goals. Making resolutions is a good idea, but here are some resolutions not to make for 2012. 

From FitSugar:

Lose 30 Pounds in Three Months – Weight loss goals are really commendale. I lost weight before my wedding and it wasn’t easy, but I did it, however, making unrealistic weight loss goals are like setting yourself up for failure. Make an attainable, long term weight loss goal. Tell yourself you’re going to lose 30 pounds by the end of the year. Start by trying to lose five pounds by February or cut 250 calories per day. When you reach these mini goals, make sure you celebrate, but just not with food.

To Cut out All Sugar – Eating too many pieces of cake or too many cookies over the holiday season can make you want to swear it all off for good, but going to an extreme like resolving to not eat any sugar may be too much for you to handle. If you have a sweet tooth like me, make a resolution instead to just cut back. Allow yourself to moderately indulge every now and then in a piece of cake or a few bread sticks. That way you’re less likely to eat a whole row of cake and a whole basket of breadsticks which is probably more than you would have eaten if you hadn’t made the resolution to not eat carbs and sugar ever.

To Eat Healthier – Deciding to eat healthier is also a commendable goal, but it’s the broadness of the resolution that’s the issue here. Define the goal instead to say that you’re going to eat green vegetables at least  once per day or replace dessert with a piece of fruit. Those more defined goals are easier to follow and more likely to lead to success.

To Work Out Two Hours A Day – Who has time for that? Instead, take a brisk ten minute walk through the halls of your office building. If it’s nice outside, walk around the block a couple of times. Start small. Walk for ten minutes a day for a couple of weeks, then walk for 15 or 20 minutes a day for a couple of weeks and so on. It’s a good way to get outside and it’s an excellent stress reliever.

Resolution Overload – When January 1 rolls around, we all say we’re going to ditch our unhealthy ways and start over fresh, but taking on too many goals all at once can just overwhelm you. So you have one cigarette. So you have one blueberry muffin or a piece of chocolate. Big deal. One slip up doesn’t mean you’re a failure, but if you’ve made resolutions to quit smoking, not eat sugar or carbs and lose 30 pounds by the end of the month, you’re more likely to throw in the towel if you have one small slip. Start with one goal. When you stick with it for a few weeks or a month, add another goal. You don’t have to start everything on January 1.

Another thing I’ve found helps is to find a buddy to lose weight with or to quit smoking with. You can lean on each other for support when the going gets tough and that way, you’re also accountable to someone. Just remember to not be harsh when the other person has a slip.

Also, write it down and keep it in a place where you’re going to look at it. Just make sure it’s not a long laundry list that’s just going to bum you out. Start small and remember, you don’t have to start January 1. You can make a fresh start for yourself any day of the year.

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