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Realisations over Resolutions

January sure went by really fast and in the blink of an eye, the month of love is zooming past us. How many of you made a New Years resolution to lose weight/diet in 2018 only to be sabotaged this past week by chocolates and sweets on Valentines’ Day? We are less than 8 weeks into the year and already sidetracked from our resolutions. I feel your pain. Especially now that bathing suit season is creeping up. Yikes! What’s the deal with the resolutions that we just made in January?

Statistics show that 80% of New Year Resolutions fail by the second week of February (coincides with Valentine’s Day…!) and also that only 8% of people are able to achieve their resolution. Makes you think what special powers these 8% have that they are able to change their lives?

If you look at it, resolutions are no different than anything else we do in our life. We are always trying to be a better version of ourselves. We want to eat healthier, look slimmer, work faster or quit a bad habit. So what is it that the 8% is doing differently, or in other words the 92% is not able to do?

Lets try to dig deeper into what resolutions really are. Dictionary defines it as a firm decision to do or not to do something. Now it all sounds fine on paper but the fact of the matter is that almost all resolutions are made from a drive to do something new for the New Year. We all think that somehow the New Year will present us a new Avatar that will enable us to embark on a new journey. Some even think it will get them rid of a habit that they haven’t been able to quit for so long, like smoking or drinking or gambling. As the excitement of the New Year fades , the motivation or the drive to make that change fades too. Sadly but truly, most people give up. Sometimes even before they have really tried. So the new gym clothes still have the tag on, the veggies and fruits bought have gone in trash more than once and pizza is on speed dial again.

But what if we don’t call them resolutions at all. Honestly, something about the term “New Year Resolutions” sound so gimmicky. What if we call them realisations? Realisation is defined as something that is made real or concrete. I love the fact that the word “real” is a part of it. It makes it feel achievable. You will ask what’s the difference Michelle? Here is how I look at it and sincerely feel is the secret weapon of the 8%. Resolutions miss a very important component and that is Intention.

An intention comes with a plan, a strategy that is easy to follow and is tangible. It comes from a realisation that the change needs to be made. This is the main reason why going on a short term crash diet never works for people. What works is when they truly have an intention to make a change for their own good and realise that making healthy eating a lifestyle is a much better option. It is the only option that will give them long term results. So be it losing weight, kicking a bad habit or starting a new good one. When it comes to a change, start with intention and realisations.

How do we make those realisations a reality? Slowly and thoughtfully. Not with a short-term end goal, but with the realisation that the changes we are hoping for are going to be the result of lifelong changes in our habits and efforts. Yes, it takes effort to make the changes needed to create new habits. Sounds overwhelming but we offer some advice here Good Habits and Good Health Go Hand and Hand. And attempting to change your habits can be easier for some people than a resolution because there is no pressure to hit a specific “date” that we have to measure our results. And creating new habits can be fun, involving the entire family.

Here are a few suggestions to make that realisation a reality:

  1. Put down in writing what your intentions are. Not just to lose weight but how? Going to the gym/exercising, changing the foods you are eating, being more mindful? Putting it in writing makes it more tangible.
  2. Create an action plan! Which exercise will you enjoy the most and how will it fit into your schedule? Put it in your calendar and stick to that schedule. Frame your mindset to think of this as a treat for yourself, not a chore. You deserve time to take care of yourself! I love to listen to a book on Audible while I am working out at the gym – it’s like a two-for-one treat for me.
  3. Seek out some new recipes and make a grocery list. Have fun exploring new aisles and ingredients that you have never tried before. Remember, Julia Childs started from scratch in the kitchen and so can you. Stick to things that aren’t too difficult to begin with but challenge yourself to something out of your comfort zone as you progress.
  4. Reward yourself for your progress! Be your best cheerleader! I know how nice it is to hear someone compliment you on your progress but the only person that should matter is you – after all, isn’t that who you are doing this for?

With a plan and intention you can achieve the realisation that you are creating a healthier, more vibrant you! Then it doesn’t matter if it’s January 1st or February 19th, you can make the change in your life at any time for that!

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