If you make a vow to yourself on December 31 st or any other day. Keep it. Instead of a once a year New Years Diet Resolution, make a real commitment. A true diet resolution means making behavior changes consistently.
How To Stick To Your New Year’s Diet Resolution
Whether you are trying to lose weight, build muscle or improve your life set one specific behavioral goal at a time. Then take action. Behaviors are not easy to change. So use tools that will help you succeed with your New Years Diet Resolution. For example, set a daily alarm, mark your calendar for a specific day of each month and re-visit your goal to determine if the goal is realistic.
If you set a general goal, it is likely you will fall into the 25% of those people whose “diet” will fail.
What is your New Year’s Diet Resolution goal? Do you want to lose weight or just be healthier this year? The goal and strategies you set must be front and center on a daily basis. How will you accomplish it?
For instance a New Years Diet Resolution Goal:
a general goal might be: I’m going to follow a diet to lose weight this year.
a behavioral goal is: I will replace bread rice and potatoes with green leafy vegetable. More specifically you can even have a shopping list to direct you not to buy rice, potatoes, and bread. And then, to purchase spinach, bok choy, and Swiss Chard.
The behavioral goal is a specific behavior strategy that supports you on how are you going to achieve the goal. It will help assist you with daily challenges.
Whether diet, lifestyle or any goal, if you stick with it, you will succeed. Therefore, make sure the goal is doable. In other words, it must be practical. If the goal is not simple and doesn’t fit your lifestyle, it will be too difficult. The goal will likely not be achieved.
Renew Your (New Year’s Diet Resolution) Vow With Success
After 3-4 weeks, if you are successful, renew your vow it’s working for you. Then add a second goal with 3 new strategies for detailed actions in February. Do this each month.
Goal: I will lose 1-2 pounds each week.
2. Track my foods for accountability (use an app to track).
3. When hungry, I will eat not deprive myself when I’m hungry.
Allow yourself three and a half weeks to determine if the set goal is realistic or you need to change it so that it is attainable. If you have not achieved your goal in 3 weeks, re-do your vow so that it is more achievable.
Re-do Your (New Year’s Diet Resolution) Vow When Unsuccessful
If a New Year’s Diet strategy works, i.e. #2, keep it and “renew” the vow. If strategies don’t work, as in #1 and #3 above then re-do it. Notice the main idea is the same but the “Renew” and “Re-do” behaviors in #1 and #3 are slightly different.
Goal: I will lose one-two pounds each week.
1. If I eat a 100 calorie snack pack at work, this will be my only desert of the day.
2. I will track my foods for accountability (use an app to track daily food).
3. I will identify real hunger vs. eating when bored.
Just because you may have to re-do an initial behavioral strategy it does not mean that you throw in the weight loss towel. There is more than one way to get things done. It may take a little time to find what works but, you will be on track soon enough.
At the end of each month, set a time on your calendar when you check-in, evaluate your progress, or lack of progress. Learn to accommodate your lifestyle, your food preferences and any other hiccup that might interfere with your goal in order to identify what works for you.
When you individualize your own plan, you will beat the odds and find a lifetime of success.
So ask yourself, how did my plan go in January? Which strategies worked? What changes will need to be made to next months plan?
New Year’s Diet Resolution Wrap Up
If you make a New Year’s Diet Resolution, use behavioral and manageable goals that will increase the likelihood of your weight loss success. A daily commitment is necessary, don’t just make an annual fly-by-night New Year’s Resolution. Make behavior changes based on challenges that interfere with diet success.
Most importantly, Happy, Healthy and Peaceful New Year to you and your families.