The New Year allows us to look back on the past year and reflect on how we can be better and stay focused.  Many of us desire to improve our health, to be more fit, eat better, reduce sugars, and live a healthier lifestyle. These desired changes encourage us to take on a New Year’s Resolution to modify unhealthy habits. However, they key is not to overhaul our entire lifestyle, but to be mindful and realistic in our resolutions so we can succeed.  Being able to focus on realistic expectations is what will drive us to achieve our New Year’s resolutions.

How do we really focus and make a change to achieve our desired New Year’s resolution?

When setting a resolution goal, define one goal at a time and don’t overload yourself taking on too much change at once.  Focus on steps that allow you to attain your resolution, steps that are tangible and quantifiable.  An arbitrary goal is to snack better, but a tangible and quantifiable goal is to replace processed snacks with vegetables and fruit.  Additionally, an arbitrary goal is to increase workouts, but a tangible and quantifiable goal is to schedule 3 workout days during the week.  Structuring goals like this allows you to focus on the actual goal and succeed in your efforts.  If you start to see yourself wavering, adjust the goals as necessary.  Focusing on small achievable steps will help you stay the course of your resolution.

It is important to plan for your resolution needs.  For instance, schedule workouts around where they fit into your daily routine, generate a grocery list based on the healthy meals and snack you will be enjoying and make sure you have it in advance. This schedule enables you to stick to your goals and stay focused on your resolution desires.

There may be frustrating setbacks along the way but refocus and get back on track. Allow yourself to believe you can succeed in your goal, that is the key to achieving your New Year’s resolution. Commitment and tenacity are critical, celebrate the small steps, all improvement counts. Focus and push yourself to keep trying.

Invite a friend to check in on one another and keep each other focused, share success and struggles, and communicate when you are feeling less motivated. Additionally, keep a journal to help you focus and stay on track, especially when you struggle and are having a hard time, review it to realize the progress you’ve made, and give yourself a little boost confidence to continue.

When changing long-term behaviors, mistakes will be made and that is OK, always plan for a reset.  Don’t throw all your progress out the window, focus on the changes you have successfully made and continue to push yourself forward.

The key to succeeding in healthy New Year’s resolution is focus, that is the only way to change and adopt better, healthier habits.