It’s that time of year again. A time for self-improvement and self-renewal. And, if you’re like most people, you made a list on the morning of January 1 of all the personal goals you wanted to achieve in 2018.
Read more? Check! Exercise more? Yup. Eat better? Always. Lose weight? You bet!
And if you’re like most people, one week in, you might already be falling off the wagon. But this year you don’t have to fail. You can actually make good on all these promises. Here’s the strategy:
- Take the long view instead of aiming for short-term gains. If you tried turning your life upside down in the past (Cabbage Soup diet anyone?) you probably found that it didn’t work because it was unsustainable. This year, go for the small changes instead. Like adding an apple to every lunch. Over the course of the year, that will be 3 extra bushels of apples you will have added to your diet (along with all the extra fiber, antioxidants and micronutrients). At Step One Foods we know it’s the small sustained changes that really count – and that can have a dramatic impact on your health.
- Don’t let prior failures color your determination. Even a tiny success in the past (however short lived) is an indication that you CAN make the change. If you did it once before, you can do it again. Think of your prior attempts as trial runs.
- Track your progress. Keeping a log of your successes, however small, will help keep you motivated and energized. Again, don’t focus on the misses – just the hits. This is not about self-shaming. This is about self-improvement.
- Don’t deprive yourself. At Step One Foods, we know that asking people to stop eating everything they love DOES NOT WORK. It only leads to cravings and, ultimately, an unhealthy relationship with food. We all have our favorite indulgences. They key is to recognize them and not overdo it. If you love ice cream, don’t buy a gallon container for your freezer – why invite disaster? If you want to eat some, scoop out a reasonable portion (you know what that is) and then stop at that amount. Enjoy every bite by eating it slowly – guilt free. And then move on.
- Get some support. Having a buddy that’s trying to do the same thing you are makes it easier for the both of you to stay on task. The greatest reason Weight Watchers is so successful is not because they make you count points. It’s because they provide you with a support system of people trying to attain the same goal – in a non-judgmental environment.
- Be more specific and realistic. You’ll notice the goals listed at the top of this blog are pretty general. Read more – what does that mean? If you make it more concrete, it will be easier to track. And what is a reasonable amount of reading you can really see yourself doing? You might decide you want to read a book a week. Have you done this before? Is that realistic given all your other time demands? If you make it realistic, it will be attainable.
- Focus on the WHY of your resolution. Eating better is a great goal – but why are you trying to eat better? Is it because you want to feel better? Is it because you want to be a good example to your children? Is it because you want to reduce your reliance on prescription medications? The WHY of your resolution is the brass ring that you’re reaching for. Seeing it clearly will help you focus on the importance of succeeding.
At Step One Foods we are committed to helping you succeed. Our foods are a simple, realistic tool to help you make an impactful, sustainable dietary change. We’re here to support all your efforts to get healthier, feel better, and reduce your reliance on prescription medications. So go ahead and go for that brass ring! You can do it!