New Year’s resolutions. Did you set any?
New Year, New You. Been there done that, right?
Are you over it? Me too.
Admittedly, I do love the turn of the New Year, but not for all the messages that prey on our insecurities; “Lose the belly fat for good”, “Your best butt in 6 weeks”, “Bikini Body in 2019”, etc. Motivation in setting these weight loss goals is fueled by thinking that something is wrong with us and that we need to “fix” it. The foundation of this thinking is the belief of “I’m not good enough”. The thing is, we are good enough. We are already awesome. If we want to change or improve upon something in our lives by adopting healthier habits, I say yes, do that but if you are driven to lose weight by pressures of a thin ideal, it might be helpful to look within. Body image is an inside job but so often we look to the outside for answers. Growing, improving and feeling good about ourselves is very important and I encourage everyone to move in the direction of achieving these things. What I don’t encourage is engaging in a focus on unhealthy habits.
Lose weight is the #1 most popular New Year’s resolution and also the most commonly broken resolution. New diets, programs and plans will be flooding social media and TV. They will be everywhere! Cleanses, detoxes and those 30-day challenges will be lurking at every corner all promising solutions for perceived body flaws.
Diets don’t work. End of story. Our bodies don’t need cleanses or detoxes, the body is naturally designed to be able to clear waste materials.
Challenges can be a boost to start a fitness regime and a motivational carrot but they aren’t the long-term solution you may need. The challenges are not customized for you, they don’t produce lasting results and sometimes they are a cover up for selling a product. They still can be a great kick-start to long-term healthy habits though and might be a fun way to connect with people with like minded goals and interests.
What I love about the New Year:
People are motivated and eager to try new things, energetic and excited about what’s to come. They are hopeful, feeling renewed and hopeful. That energy is electric and totally awesome! I love it!
It’s also the time of year where clients are pumped to engage in goal setting and I truly enjoy that process. Supporting people in helping them to realize their potential is one of the best parts of my role.
Here are a few new ideas for the New Year instead of setting resolutions which are usually things you are going to start or stop doing. Try adopting a different mindset. Decide on the things you will create, skills & knowledge you will learn, habits you’ll develop and feelings & values you’ll cultivate. Work towards these actions and you will discover other benefits and positive side effects will fall into place for you. Becoming process oriented can be very effective in creating healthy long-lasting habits that set you up for success.
Still want to set resolutions, start the latest diet, join that challenge you saw on Facebook? GO FOR IT! There is nothing wrong with wanting to set resolutions, just be sure we aren’t confusing health with losing weight, they aren’t the same thing. Keeping the focus on healthy habits and being/getting healthy and fit instead of the thin ideal is a step towards body acceptance.
You do you. Do what is right for you and makes you feel good. Everyone is unique and there is no one size fits all approach. Everyone greets the New Year differently. Setting goals and resolutions are a valuable way to design your future and create motivation. There will be obstacles along the way, ask for help, be kind to yourself, keep an open mind, regularly check in with yourself to determine if your New Year plan is working for you and adjust accordingly.
If these strategies don’t speak to you, try this self-reflection exercise to help you decide how you will lead yourself into 2019. Using this exercise like a compass, ask yourself or journal about the following questions to guide you in the direction that feels right for you. See what comes up and follow your instinct.
What gives you purpose?
What lights you up?
What fulfills you?
What makes you smile from the inside out?
What excites you?
What makes you lose track of time?
When do you feel your best?
My 2019 hope for you:
To feel your best.