The Problem with Resolutions

Over the past month leading up to the New Year, my mind (and inbox) has been consumed with the idea of New Year’s Resolutions.  The wonderful thing about the New Year is that it brings a clean slate and a fresh start to another year.  It’s a time to look back on the past year, plan for the present and reflect on changes that we want or need to resolve in the New Year.  It’s an excellent time for a new beginning.

With that new beginning comes new promises that we make to ourselves – new resolutions.  Unfortunately, many resolutions fall flat after a couple of weeks and this can happen for many reasons.  Often times people choose resolutions based on how they want to perform or appear.  An example would be, “I want to lose 30lbs.”  The problem with this resolution is that it does not address forming a habit or changing a behavior.  A better resolution would be, “I will workout three times per week.”  It is important to always use action words with your resolutions such as “I will” to set yourself up for success and not failure. Once you can reach and sustain this behavior, you can build upon this goal and add in more specifics.

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Another reason why resolutions can be hard for people to maintain is that they begin with too aggressive of an approach.  If your resolution is to eat more healthily and you go from eating terribly to cutting out all junk food, you may feel too restricted.  It’s easy to give up this resolution when you tell yourself you’ll never eat a cookie again.  It’s just not sustainable and I mean who wants to eat healthily if they can never indulge in a cookie again?!  A more realistic approach to this resolution would be, “ I will make more healthy choices with every meal.”  Once again, conquer this goal and then build upon it.

If you’ve read this far, you may get the idea that I’m not a fan of resolutions.  Not entirely true.  I think they can be a great motivator for some people.  They can also work if the resolution is focused on changing a behavior and it is done with a realistic approach.  However, the point that I want to get across in this article is…

“If something is worth changing,
it should be done everyday,
not once a year.”

If you want to lead a more healthy and active lifestyle, work on creating that positive behavior every day.  If you want to become a better friend to those closest to you, once again, work on doing so every day.  Begin by changing your behavior and start small.  You can build upon your goals as your behavior changes and positive habits are formed.

If you already have a New Year’s resolution in effect, by all means, stick with it!  If your resolution isn’t working out for you, tweak it and try a different approach.  If you don’t have a resolution (like me), think about what behaviors you would like to change over the next year and take the first step to create new positive habits.  And always keep in mind, if something is worth changing, it should be done everyday, not just once a year!

Written by Sophie DeHenzel
The Problem with Resolutions


About DeHenzel Training Systems: DeHenzel Training Systems offers In Home Personal Training services throughout Northern Virginia and Washington DC.  Aside from in home, personal training is also available at the office gym or outdoors at a local park.

Within Northern Virginia, we service Loudoun, Fairfax and Prince William Counties including: Alexandria, Annandale, Arlington, Ashburn, Burke, Centreville, Chantilly, Fairfax, Falls Church, Great Falls, Herndon, Lansdowne, Leesburg, Lorton, McLean, Oakton, Reston, Springfield, Sterling, Tyson’s Corner, Vienna and Woodbridge.

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