Are you ready for 2013? Eager to say farewell to 2012? Bye bye, Mayan calendar? And how about those resolutions? Did you accomplish the ones you said you would this year (be honest), or are they going on your new list, if you're even bothering to make one?
Resolutions aren't meant to be broken, and yet, more often than not, they are -- starting as early as the first week of the new year. Feeling like you've failed at your goals so early on isn't exactly the most encouraging way to jump into a new year, let alone making you feel good about yourself. So how can you stick to your resolutions in 2013 without breaking them?
Here are some ways that might be helpful to start the year off with a bang and not a whimper:
1. Make resolutions that are realistic. There's nothing wrong with having big goals and wanting to reach for the moon, but start with ones you know you can pull off. It would be great to climb the Himalayas, but how about starting with conquering a challenging hiking trail first.
2. Put a list of your resolutions up somewhere where you can see them daily. A good spot is on a mirror where you can read them out loud and see yourself doing it. There's something about watching yourself saying what you want to accomplish that makes it official.
3. Start your morning saying "I can do it!" and repeat it five times. Do the same in the afternoon and before you go to sleep. Repeating affirmations helps make it become a reality.
4. Try and do one thing a day that supports your resolutions. It doesn't matter how big or small that thing is as long as you do something that helps maintain your goal. If it's working out, do it for as long as you can -- even 15 minutes or half an hour is better than nothing.
5. Catch your thoughts that can break your resolutions, like "A piece of cake won't hurt me" or, "One more cigarette isn't a big deal" or, "I'll just have one drink." Replace them with thoughts that support your resolutions, like "This piece of cake will hurt my diet" or, "One more cigarette is a big deal" or, "I don't need to have this drink. I'm fine without it." You can control your thoughts that help you realize your resolutions, so don't accept thoughts that don't.
6. Don't get caught up in the number of pounds you want to lose. Often times that number can become a burden and can weigh heavily on your mind like extra pounds, which is exactly what you don't need. Your desire to lose weight is your goal, not a number that can be intimidating.
7. Stay away from places that are too tempting until you feel stronger. That means ice cream shops, candy stores, bars, etc. It's okay to say "no" to anything, anyplace, or anyone that doesn't support your resolutions in the best way possible.
8. Be around people who value New Year's resolutions as much as you do. That means anyone who has positive goals for themselves and are serious about realizing them.
9. Don't criticize your efforts. It doesn't matter how many of your resolutions you've accomplished so far, but that you've made a concerted effort to realize them. Trying is better than not trying at all.
10. If a negative thought enters your mind and tries to sabotage your efforts to realize your resolutions, tell yourself, "I got the power; you don't."
The new year is a whole new opportunity for yourself, different than any time before. Think of it as a new beginning, a new chapter, a new you, and the best way not to break your New Year's resolutions is by being consistent about realizing them. You don't want to allow too many missed days to go by not supporting your resolutions, or it will make it too easy for you to give up, and that's not going to happen this year, right?
Remember: "I can do it!" is your No. 1 mantra. Now let me hear you say it louder!
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