Instead of making New Year’s resolutions, how about making New Day’s resolutions? The vast majority of people set unrealistic one-year goals and when they fall off the bandwagon within the first 2-3 weeks, they give up; as they simply don’t enjoy their newly forced resolution!
Some alcoholics anonymous or food anonymous groups tell individuals dealing with various addictions and habits to not focus on the long-term, such as one year, one month or even one week, but to focus on ONE DAY…TODAY! If you tell an alcoholic that they are to abstain from alcohol for the rest of their life or one year, it becomes a daunting task. If you tell a person with food addiction that they are to not consume any sugar for one month, that also becomes an overwhelming goal. However if the aim is to not drink alcohol or consume sugar or do a physical activity for just for one day, which is today, then the goal becomes much less threatening and more reasonable.
Instead of setting the goal that you will exercise everyday this year, set the goal that you will do SOME physical activity JUST TODAY; forget about tomorrow. Upon waking up in the morning, you will say to yourself, “I will do some kind of physical activity TODAY”. The secret however is to not be judgmental and hard on yourself on the duration or the intensity of the activity. Just be happy with ANYTHING that you do.
That is where I recommend The Pain Truth app where I have patients write down 3 small activities that they did for the day. It can be something VERY small such as I walked for 10 minutes, I did 5 wall push ups, I did 2 minutes of Yoga poses, I took the stairs instead of the elevator. By celebrating our small accomplishments, we are far more likely to stay motivated to challenge ourselves to greater accomplishments such as going for a 1 hour walk or doing a 1 hour yoga class or doing 30 minutes of weight training.
The reason many simply “give up” on their New Year’s resolution is that when they miss a day or a few days, they feel like a failure and lose motivation. However, with focus on a New Day’s resolution, each day is a brand new day to start again. Start your new year by downloading The Pain Truth app and acknowledging your positive life experiences and your small physical activities.