Sticking to your health resolutions is not impossible

Now that you've resolved to get healthy in 2016, here are some tips to help you stay focused.

This article is sponsored by Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina, which has partnered with Qcitymetro since 2010.


Ayesha Qureshi
Ayesha Qureshi, MPH

The New Year is upon us, and with it comes the New Year’s resolutions – to lose weight, to eat more healthy foods, to get more rest and more exercise. The list goes on and on. However, a common concern about resolutions is being able to stick to them after the initial determination has faded.

Here are a few strategies that I think will help you stay motivated and not give up.

START SLOWLY

We’re humans, creatures of habit. Jumping into a new lifestyle change can be overwhelming, and the best way to start is to baby-step into the new routine.  If you set a goal to exercise daily and are finding it challenging to get started, set a smaller goal instead to reach that big goal of daily exercise. For instance, start with two days a week. When that becomes routine, add another day and keep building from there.

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PLAN IT OUT

Think of your resolution as traveling to a new destination. To reach this new destination, it is good to have directions beforehand. Otherwise you would be aimlessly driving, not knowing where to go.  Before you tackle your goals for a new yoga routine, eating a salad every day, or not hitting the snooze button 20 times before you finally get up, plan out ways to help you accomplish your goals.  Also make note of what challenges or obstacles you may face. Strategize! This will motivate you to get started. Which brings me to…

STAYING MOTIVATED

You planned, you baby stepped into your new routine, but now you feel you are losing the momentum and motivation. To get this back, start by asking yourself why is this happening? Are you getting bored? Is a task too difficult? Are there other strategies you can think of to reach the goal? Remind yourself why you made these resolutions in the first place.

Keeping your New Year’s resolution is not impossible. Keep a positive mindset, and remember, slow and steady wins the race.