All too often we start the New Year with a resolution which isn’t really thought through enough to survive more than a few weeks. The old adage “failing to plan means planning to fail” kicks in once the initial enthusiasm has worn off.
With just a few minutes thought at the outset, we can make our resolution more robust.
First is the nature of the goal we set ourselves. If it is SMART (specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and time-specified) it will be easier to keep track of whether we are carrying out the specific thing we resolved. Rather than “I want to lose weight in 2016”, a SMART goal would be “I aim to lose 7 pounds by March 1st”.
Second is how we think about ourselves as we try to stick to the resolution. If we doubt whether we can achieve the goal, success is less likely.
What will success look and feel like? (What will I be doing/ thinking/ feeling differently when I reach my goal?)
When I did something previously that I found hard, how did I manage to do it?
What do I know about myself that reassures me that I can achieve this goal?
When you have the answers to these questions, you will be engaging with the resourceful and competent aspects of yourself, and it is these aspects you will need to be drawing on. You may find it helpful to find pictures or slogans which help you focus on achieving your goal. Choose images or words which focus on success rather than doubt and use them to help re-engage with your own competence whenever you feel you are flagging. Put the pictures or words where you will see them when you need reminding of them.
If you know someone who has their own New Year’s Resolution you could pair up and support each other, working out what you each need to hear any time you are struggling.
When you achieve your goal of losing seven pounds in two months, you will not only have lost weight but also gained in confidence. That’s a great starting point for your next SMART goal.
More details on how Appetite Retraining works are at www.theappetitedoctor.co.uk