As we approach the New Year we can look upon it like a blank book open to any and all possibilities. It’s that time of the year when we make promises to ourselves to change bad habits, adopt healthier habits and make positive changes that will lead us to a happier self. It is also that time of the year when we are bombarded by advertisements suggesting we join a new gym, purchase new exercise equipment, start taking vitamin supplements, buy and eat healthier snacks, get into a new 2017 vehicle and escape winter by booking our winter vacation. The reality is that most of us do not live up to our resolutions and go back to our old habits within the first 3 weeks.
To carry out a successful resolution it is said that you should work on one thing at a time. And keep in mind that it takes 30 days to create a new habit so stick to it. It will be a challenge because we are naturally inclined to go back to our old habit because it is comfortable and easy. Change, true change, is never easy. According to statistics 50% of the population make resolutions. It is seen as an opportunity to reinvent or better oneself.
Many of us set unrealistic goals and expectations for ourselves which inevitability lead to our demise. Changing a behaviour is like deprogramming yourself, it’s a rewiring of your brain. Making a realistic resolution is just as important as the resolution itself. You can’t expect to lose 50 pounds in a month (not in a healthy and lasting way). Taking small steps and working on it every day will get you closer to you successfully achieving your goal. Having a buddy to help encourage you along the way doesn’t hurt either. We can’t always rely on our own motivation to get us off that couch, or put down that cigarette or bag of chips. Lazy is easy and what most of us want to revert to.
I will admit that I personally do not set New Year’s resolutions because I know I will fail. I do however work on myself throughout the year. I am currently working on patience. I have two boys who continually and constantly test my patience and this is something I need to work on in order to not only keep my own sanity but to be a better mother. I experienced an exercise in patience last night as my 3 year old decided to help me wrap presents for our staff holiday party (after I had already finished wrapping them!). I will admit that I initially blew up but as my toddler looked up at me with huge tears flowing down his adorable little cheeks I stopped, got down on my knees, gave him a huge hug, apologized for my outburst and thanked him for his desire to help mommy. I then made a point of helping him wrap up a box of light bulbs to give to daddy on Christmas day. It was a long process with far too much tape and discussion as to where the tape should be applied but I exercised patience and the end result was a beautifully wrapped box of light bulbs and more importantly a much happier little boy.
So to all of you reading this, try and set realistic resolutions for yourself if you are inclined to do so and best of luck with seeing them through. Remember we are all in the same room…the room for improvement!