Whether you want to set a typical New Year’s Resolution, or just continue to improve your eating and activity habits, January is a good time to make a change. There’s lots of energy and social support for developing healthy habits. And most people are feeling ready to eat smarter and move more after the holiday season. Here are three tips to help you form healthy habits in the new year.
- Use short-term goals to make long-term habits. Habits are tough to break and take a while to create. So break down your goal into smaller actions that build up towards your new habit. For example, to create a habit of eating more vegetables, start with adding a veggie to just one meal a day. Once you’re comfortable with that, add them to another meal, and so on. Smaller actions require less effort and you’re more likely to follow through.
- Make a plan. If you want to make a dramatic change to your daily lifestyle, then you need to put effort into planning for success. Start by creating a SMART goal. Think about ways to overcome barriers and setbacks. Figure out a way to reward yourself for progress towards your goal. (Read this post from last year for more information and feel free to ask for advice in the comments.)
- Find your motivation and visualize success. It probably doesn’t shock you to know that most people don’t fulfill their resolutions. Change is hard and without strong motivation, it’s often easier to give up. But if you can think about why you want to change (to be able to keep up with your active children, to feel better as you age, or to raise healthy eaters, etc.), you can use this as motivation to keep trying when it gets tough. Close your eyes and imagine what it will feel like to achieve your goal. Think about why this change is important to you and how it will affect your life. Write down your motivations and your desired outcomes to refer to when you feel like giving up.
Make 2018 your healthiest year yet by eating smart and moving more. Share your resolutions with us in the comments. Cheers!