How many new year’s resolutions have you successfully achieved? Not many? Perhaps you have already abandoned all your good intentions for 2023. Well, you are not alone. In fact, research shows that more than 80 per cent of new year’s resolutions are abandoned. The good news is, it’s not too late to re-set your goals and achieve them.
Community Care Chemist nutritionist Elaine Waller has this advice: If you want to fulfill your 2023 goals, follow these ‘SMART’ guidelines & you’ll be well on your way!
S – Specific
Ensure your resolution includes enough detail. Altering ‘I want to lose weight’ to ‘I want to lose 5kg of weight’ gives you a specific goal to work towards. Altering, ‘I want to exercise more’ to ‘I want to include 5, 30 minute or more, exercise sessions each week’ will provide that end goal and drive success.
M – Measurable
Choosing a resolution that you can actually measure will allow you to track your progress. Consider all the ways it could be measured and choose the one that you would find the most motivating. For example, measuring weight loss can be done by weighing in on the scales or by assessing waist circumference but it can also be measured by those favourite old pair of jeans you really want to fit back into.
A – Achievable
Many things can hinder a resolutions progress. Hormonal imbalances, some medications, a severe injury or poor mobility can make substantial weight loss quite unachievable until the issue is addressed. Remember that whilst goals should be specific, they can also be flexible. You can fit those 5 exercise sessions anywhere in your week, rather than stipulating what days you must exercise. Set yourself a flexible resolution, achievable for you, no matter how small.
R – Realistic
Setting your sights on losing 30kgs may be a little daunting and unrealistic in the shorter term. Setting smaller, more realistic short-term goals will give you that confidence and motivation to continue but it will also allow you to reassess new goals as your journey evolves.
T – Time Bound
There is nothing like a deadline to keep you on track! Make your resolution time bound by detailing exactly when you want to achieve the goal by. For example, a realistic weight loss goal could be a weekly target of 0.5kg, 2kg in the first month, with an end target of 5kg in 6 months. You could also set yourself a timeline to build up to your goal. For example, if your end goal was to be able to run 5km, set yourself a training schedule, increasing distance over time.
Changing mindset, lifestyle and habits can be hard work. So be kind to yourself and set yourself a SMART goal for better health in 2023.