Guest Post Written by Jake Moreno
February and March are notorious for being the months during which most people give up on their new year’s resolutions. Every January, fitness centers fill up with swarms of people who are determined that this year is the year they will get into the habit of making fitness a part of their daily lives and come March, the fitness centers are almost empty aside from the regulars who had been there before. This is only one example of how people find it difficult to follow through on their big commitments.
There is a pretty specific reason as to why most people give up on their new year’s resolutions: the goals are too intense. When people set new year’s resolutions, they tend to make them very extreme. What happens is that because the changes are so extreme and the goals so intense, they easily discourage people who are trying to reach them.
If someone wants to go from never working out to working out for two hours five days a week, that’s a pretty significant change. So extreme, in fact, that it is very easy for someone to think to themselves, “Oh, I’m not feeling well today. I’ll just make sure I go tomorrow.” And before you know it, they have given up on their goal and cancelled their gym membership.
Because the problem is so specific, it allows for a quick and easy solution: starting small. Research suggests that lasting change is most often caused by taking smaller steps. Instead of working out for two hours every day, take the stairs instead of the elevator. If you want to keep your house clean, start with the kitchen table and make sure it doesn’t get messy for one week.Save 50.0% on select products from Wolfyok with promo code 50EGH11R, through 3/31 while supplies last.
By starting small, you give yourself a reasonable workload and reinforce your habit by rewarding yourself as you complete it. It’s been said that the journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step, and it’s important to notice that it says “step,” not “40-yard dash” or “100-foot jump.”
Now that we know that lasting change is brought about by baby steps, it’s time to set some very small, attainable goals to reach. And in an effort to help you on your way, here is a list of small lifestyle changes that will get you headed in the right direction. Once you’ve mastered these, you’ll be ready to move onward and upward and you’ll be solving bigger goals before you know it!
- Every morning, drink one glass of water. Very few people drink the recommended amount of water. If you start your day with a glass of water, it will leave you feeling refreshed and will even help to wake you up, reducing your chances of hitting the snooze button and going back to sleep.
- After you’ve had your water, take around five minutes to exercise. Turn on your favorite music and dance for a bit, or do 20 push-ups, situps, and lunges. Alternatively, you can take a walk around your neighborhood.
- Eat a nutritious breakfast. If you’re not eating breakfast, start out with eating something—anything—and make it a habit. Have some eggs, oatmeal, berries, or nuts. Keep some granola bars handy for you to snack on. Improving your diet is a fantastic place to start on the road to better physical fitness, and small changes will work wonders.
- Plan your days. If you find yourself wasting a lot of time or using your free time unwisely, try planning your days the night before. Just before retiring to bed, take a minute to relax and then write out your to-do list.
- Utilize your calendar app. Everybody with a smartphone has the calendar app already downloaded onto it. If you find yourself losing track of time or forgetting important dates, make a point of adding a thing or two into your calendar app when you remember to.
- Organize one room. If one room is too large a task, pick a room (say, your home office) and clean off one desk. So long as you start somewhere, you’ll feel the sense of accomplishment and it just might be enough to motivate you to clean something else the next time you’re in the office.
What are some other small changes that you can make that will make a big difference in your life?