Guest Author: Bruce Fletcher of Lifetimeofhappy.com
New year’s resolutions are easy to make and, unfortunately, just as easy to break. In fact, only 9 percent of us ever stick to them, says a report from Inc.
With another year underway, you may be struggling to keep to a wellness-related resolution you’ve made yourself. It’s understandable – you’re likely pressed for time and have a lot on your plate. Still, sticking to it is possible – not just until March but until the end of the year and beyond.
Transform Your Bad Habits
Before you aim to boost your wellness level, you might want to take stock of your current lifestyle. We all have a certain way of waking up, eating, working, exercising (or not), sleeping (or not), and living in general. Some habits, routines, and patterns work for you, and some don’t. The goal is to transform the bad and keep the good.
According to Harvard Business Review, people struggle to break bad habits because of the behavior-reward loop. Essentially, a bad habit keeps you coming back because of the reward at the end of the cycle. You can do away with it by mindfully considering the ill effects of this “reward”. You can also attempt to change the cycle itself. For instance, instead of stopping yourself from having the snacks you crave, replace them with healthier alternatives. Research other ways to break bad habits.
Don’t Force Yourself
Not forcing yourself to do certain wellness-related activities to the written letter may help. For instance, if you hate following the same-old boring fitness routine, day in and day out, week after week, you don’t need to. Instead, you could switch things up and be more spontaneous. You could go hiking one week and biking the next. If you don’t like going to the gym, you could exercise outdoors instead.
Build Up to Your Goals Slowly Over Time
You have to learn to crawl before you can walk. Too many people end up attempting to do too much, too soon. They then don’t meet their goals and end up feeling discouraged and demotivated as a result. Remember – wellness is a marathon, not a sprint. Aim for realistic goals and achieve them consistently. You can always add more ambitious goals with time.
Work on Motivating Yourself
Your motivation gives you fuel to reach your goals and stay the course when you feel like giving up. There are several ways in which you can motivate yourself: rewarding yourself, keeping an achievements journal, practicing gratitude, being kinder to yourself, avoiding comparisons, and keeping your eyes on the prize (a healthier, happier you).
It’s much easier to stay motivated if you have someone with whom to share your wellness journey. You can have someone to prop you up when you’re not feeling strong and vice versa. Moreover, it’s always more fun with two or more people so you can pursue a range of enjoyable joint wellness activities. If you don’t have a partner, you could join fitness support groups or team-based sports.
Have a Healthier Home
Your home is important. It’s the place where you, possibly, feel safest and recharge yourself at the end of the day. It has a big impact on your mental state and physical well-being. Improving your home environment can make you feel more comfortable, help you sleep better, make you happier, and assist you in sticking to your wellness goals. Small changes can have a big impact so consider adding houseplants, reducing clutter, and allowing more natural light.
There are some factors outside of your control – hereditary conditions, illnesses, and lack – that may make it hard to stick to your wellness goals. But you can always make healthier choices regardless. Work may keep you from exercising some days, for instance – but you can still take the stairs, commute by bicycle, and do some chair yoga at your desk.
Focus on what you can do, work on getting momentum going, and you’ll have sustainable wellness before you know it.
Image via Unsplash
One Comment Add yours
Great advice, Bruce! So nice to have you on board as a contributing author.