The long-standing joke is that most of us never actually follow through with any New Year’s resolution, let alone all the fitness-related goals. They just never seem to “stick;” I think I read that more than 30 percent of people fail at their resolutions.
I thought I’d share some sure-fire tips on how to ensure your fitness-related goals will stick this year.
Make it a S.M.A.R.T. decision
Specific: Be as specific as possible. Don’t simply say “I want to lose weight,” say, “I want to lose 10 pounds in the next six months.” The more specific the better. The details matter.
Measurable: It can’t be something you guess at. Making it measurable requires you to be accountable for the results.
Attainable: While shooting for the moon is admirable, make your goal difficult but attainable. Don’t expect to move mountains. Start small.
Realistic/Relevant: This has to do with you as a person and your life. If it doesn’t have value in your life, then why will you stick to it? I won’t resolve to be a better gardener, because I’m just not that interested in gardening.
Time-dependent: This is paired with specific. Give it a timetable so you have to be accountable. No timetable means that you won’t adhere to the discipline needed.
Stop playing the bargaining game with a goal. “If I go for a run after work, I can eat my entire meal from the vending machine right now.” All that does is rationalize a weak moment, and even make it OK to repeat. Don’t let that happen.
Don’t believe the hype
If it sounds to good to be true, it probably is. There is no such thing as easy. If it was easy, everyone would be doing it, right?
You are not your friend, you are not your coworker and you are surely not the same as that guy or gal on TV. Don’t expect to get the same results they did just because you do the same thing.
Bad days are OK
If you can learn to accept minor setbacks, you will be successful. It’s the setbacks and “falling off the wagon” moments that usually lead to quitting. If you fall down, just get back up.
While none of my suggestions will guarantee success, I can confess from my own experiences these tips have helped me get through some of the toughest goals I have set.
Best of luck in 2013–make it a great one!
A nurse’s list of resolutions
In observance of the New Year, I, Jo, hereby do formalize and publicize my Resolutions for 2013. Some limitations and exclusions apply. Do not expose these Resolutions to extreme temperatures or submerge in water. Tax, title and license not included. Not for use by children. Keep away from pets and wildlife. If swallowed, do not induce vomiting. Give a glass of whiskey to dilute.
1. I will be patient with all but the most obstinate forms of stupidity.
This is tougher than it sounds. I will, however, do my best to keep a smile on my face and a song in my heart, even when faced with the most amazing Rube-Goldbergian constructions hospital management can come up with.
2. I will remember that not all doctors are socially adept.
Social ineptness is common among people (regardless of profession) who’ve spent the last 20 years in school. Make those folks the sorts of people who go into neurology, and you’ve got a double whammy. My goal this year is to be gentle if I have to remind the occasional resident to, say, bathe or wear underwear.
3. I will not snark on other nurses.
Most of us don’t eat our young. I can only remember once when I had such serious misgivings about a new nurse that I went to her boss. That doesn’t mean, though, that experienced nurses haven’t been the target of some griping on my part. No more of that.
4. I will remember that ours is a 24-hour-a-day job.
This means that getting as much extra work done as I can in a day will make life easier for my colleagues at night.
5. I will be gentle when refusing to talk politics with patients.
This resolution is not new; it’s a continuation of long-standing policy. I don’t talk about religion, politics, gun control or foreign issues with patients. Doing so raises everybody’s blood pressure and opens the door to madness.
6. I will take a deep breath, walk away and not respond to emails that make my temper flare.
Likewise, I will take a deep breath, ask for some time alone and walk away before responding to requests from Management that set my hair afire.
7. I will not eat out of the vending machines in the basement.
This is self-explanatory.
8. I will suck it up and buy myself a new pair of shoes and a new pair of orthotics, so I’m not wearing the same pair of shoes every day.
Because wearing the same pair of shoes every day is bad for your feet.
9. I will no longer make up rude limericks about attending physicians.
No matter how popular that is at the unit parties.
10. I will leave work at work every evening when I head home, rather than bringing it with me.
Work is work and home is home, and stress from one will no longer bleed into the other.