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Having trouble achieving those New Year’s resolutions?

I find that trying one small goal, or intention at a time is more rewarding.  When you try and accomplish everything at once it can be overwhelming, causing you to stop or “give up”. 


For example, instead of saying, “I’m going to change the way I eat and start exercising” is a lot.  If you need to eat more during the day, instead of at night, start with, “my intention is to eat something (anything) in the morning at least 2-3 times this week”.  That way, the goal is achievable, you can feel good about it, and increase by one more day the next week.   We tend to overset our goals, and then end up being hard on ourselves. 


Also, another tip is the temptation to try and cut out an entire food group or type of food.  For example, “I’m going to stop eating sugar”.  This usually backfires- better to incorporate small amounts, and if you need to decrease, do it steadily while still allowing some in your day.  It’s psychological- you feel like you are accomplishing something in the beginning (control) only to be offered it, and give up that control, then feel like you can’t stop having it (feels like no control).  


How to set and achieve goals/resolutions


Instead of being so harsh on yourself, as in “must achieve this entire goal today”  how about waking up and thinking, “what are my intentions for today?”


Then, focus on those most important things to you.  You can get to the other stuff (i.e.,not immediately due paperwork, junk emails,etc when you get to them). 


For example, you might say “my intention is to walk 20 minutes today”.  Say it out loud if that helps.  Schedule it in your calendar- look and see what time you might be able to accomplish this.


I do find “intention” to be a kinder word.  Goals are fine too, and that probably works for many.  Just thought I’d share a piece of info. that has been working for me(intentions), and might work for others. 



Aileen Birkitt, RD, LDN

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