12/28/12

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How to Prepare for New Year’s Resolutions

Aah, the New Year. Though new beginnings are often like a breath of fresh air, they can also be a bit scary. It can be a challenge to decide what you will “write on the blank page.” Even after you decide areas in which you would like to enact meaningful change, making those resolutions stick can be difficult. When it comes to greeting the springtime with your resolutions still intact, preparing well is half the battle. Below are some thoughts on how to prepare well for your New Year’s resolutions.

Whether your New Year's resolution is to get fit, run a race, or simply enjoy a new adventure, preparing ahead of time will help your resolutions to stick.

No matter what your New Year’s resolution may be, preparation will help them stick.

1. Evaluate the previous year. C.S. Lewis was onto something when he said, “We all want to progress, but if you you’re on the wrong road, progress means doing an about turn and walking back to the right road; in that case, the man who turns back soonest is most progressive.” Taking time to review your past year can reveal the areas in which you truly want to grow, as well as any new areas of interest that you would like to explore. By taking time to do some “soul searching” before you decide on resolutions, you provide yourself with the right motivation. In an article for O Magazine, Kelly McGonigal, Ph.D., a psychology lecturer at Stanford University, explains that it is important to avoid making resolutions from a place of not feeling “good enough.” Instead, choose resolutions based on what really matters to you.

2. Quiz yourself. In her Psychology Today article “Formulate an Unbreakable New Year’s Resolution,” Leslie Becker-Phelps, Ph.D., suggests asking yourself some important questions before deciding on your New Year’s resolutions. Considering the time involved in reaching a goal, whether or not it is realistic, and whether or not you can create a plan to reach your goal is important. For example, if you’ve never run a 5K, it may be unrealistic to make a resolution to run a marathon. Make resolutions that you can realistically keep.

3. Be flexible. No matter what resolutions you set, realize that somewhere along the way, you will probably make mistakes. This is OK. Choose resolutions that allow you to reevaluate if something’s not working. Cut yourself some slack, and revise your plan if it’s not working. Periodically reevaluating your plans for reaching your goals will help you to stay on track while keeping your resolutions fresh and relevant.

4. Gather inspiration. Despite the best of intentions, we all have moments when we are simply not that motivated. Take some time to gather inspiration that will keep you going on through those tough moments. Consider creating a collage with pictures and inspiring quotes, writing a letter to yourself, or placing inspirational notes around your office or home. Be as creative as you want with finding ways to keep yourself motivated.

The New Year is full of fresh possibilities, so use your imagination and a sense of adventure when it comes to creating your New Year’s resolutions! Taking some time to prepare beforehand will help you come up with goals that truly matter to you.

If you are interested in exploring new ways to get healthy, meet new friends, or relax and recharge, we encourage you to check out the variety of membership opportunities available at Garden of the Gods Club. To do so, contact Membership Director Tracey Kalata at 719.520.4980 or tkalata@ggclub.com. Do you have any other thoughts on how to set meaningful, effective New Year’s resolutions? If so, we encourage you to share them in the comments box below.

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