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Why Making New Year Resolutions Is A Worthless Activity (Unless You Use These Two Tips)

Updated on February 17, 2014
New Year's Eve Ball
New Year's Eve Ball

The New Year's Eve Resolution Maker

Have you ever seen a TV show on New Year's eve where the host interviews people making their New Year's resolutions? People think they are going to stop smoking, lose 50 pounds, get ripped or some other goal they will never achieve in the next year or the next ten years. Most of this people truly believe they will get to their goal, but usually fail miserably.

Why?

The goals sound wonderful (especially voiced to the public).

They are lofty goals that are theoretically achievable.

But NOT using the methods most people embrace.

These Techniques Work!

Let's take the example goal of losing 50 pounds in one year.

This goal is entirely possible if the following two things happen:

  • You chunk down the goal. Losing 50 pounds in a year sounds a lot more likely if it's expressed as losing a pound a week.
  • You do it one activity at a time, forming good habits along the way (it takes about 30 days to form a habit).

What activity can you start with to help you start losing a pound a week? If you are a couch potato, you could start walking 20 minutes a day 5 times during a week.

During week 2, you begin cutting back on sugar, This is an easy task because there's sugar in practically everything you eat. Notice food labels and substitute items with less sugar. Shoot for 50 grams or less per day. Also, you are still walking 20 minutes a day 5 times a week.

During week 3, you continue walking but add hand or ankle weights while you walk. You continue the sugar reduction diet. You can find the sugar content of most foods online.

By week 4, you should be losing an average of a pound a week. If you are, continue week 3 activities for another week. If not, add another activity or up the ante in activities you are already doing (restrict sugar to 30 versus 50 grams per day).

By the end of a month, you have moved closer to your target by developing good nutrition and exercise habits. The key is to add new activities gradually while maintaining existing good habits.

Both of these techniques are must-do's.

People who fail to accomplish a goal typically do not use these techniques.

Most people try to do several activities at the same time to achieve an overwhelming goal.

You probably know someone who has started a diet and joined a health club at the same time. Over time, the visits to the health club decline and then disappear. The diet starts out fine and lasts a few weeks. Then the cheating starts. The desserts re-appear and the weight loss reverses itself. The good habits were never established.

Reaching A Goal Is A Journey

Hey folks - reaching a goal is a journey. Mistakes will be made. Some weeks you will lose two or more pounds. Some weeks you may lose no pounds or gain a pound. But people who stay on the journey learn to enjoy it and stay motivated because they are reaching short-term targets.

Overcoming obstacles on the journey becomes a challenge. An obstacle for people who exercise is an injury. However, it's possible to come up with workarounds for some injuries. You hurt your shoulder lifting weights. That does not prevent you from doing leg lifts or squats.

Bottom Line - begin your journey slowly and you are more likely to get the most benefit from the trip to your goal.

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