It’s that time of year. Time to buy a gym membership then bail a few months later. In fact, about 1 in 8 people who get a gym membership in January quit by May.
This doesn’t have to be you. Here are a few ideas for making resolutions that you’ll actually keep.
Make Tandem Resolutions
If this is your year to quit smoking, congrats! It’s going to be difficult. But you can increase your chances of succeeding if you make a tandem goal to exercise your willpower. Addiction treatment centers use it all the time. Smokers who pledged to avoid sweets or squeeze a grip strengthener twice a day, as well as quitting smoking, were 27% more successful at quitting than those who didn’t do the self-control exercises.
Pick One at a Time
Most people who make resolutions aim to change their lives. That’s great, but it’s also life changing—like on a daily, minute-to-minute level. Losing weight is a worthy goal, but it’s huge. It means changing daily habits and even changing the way you think all at once. Do one change at a time and you’ll have better success. Start with something simple like taking a multi-vitamin, then move on to another goal after you’ve mastered that one.
Laughing, and otherwise engaging in activities that keep you happy, increases your willpower. Research has shown that a few minutes of your favorite stand-up comedian will help you stick to your goals and keep you going through those tempting times. So bookmark your favorite funny cats YouTube video!
Increase Your Blood Glucose Level
Guess what? Self-restraint is enough of a physical exertion that it can lower your glucose level and that decreases your willpower. Grab some fruit or a glass of OJ to keep you going when you start to feel tempted.
Sing Your Own Praises
Don’t hesitate to give yourself a little boost by reminding yourself of some of the fabulous things you’ve accomplished in the past. It doesn’t have to be big. It’s a showing of willpower every time you do something you don’t want to do, like finishing your broccoli or getting out of bed.
Be Nice, Or Not
A Harvard study showed that people who gave to charity had more willpower. But another study by the same researchers found that participants who imagined harming someone else had even more willpower than the charitable. You don’t have to be mean to increase your willpower though. Turns out that it’s more about increasing your feeling of personal power.
Use Visual Cues
Putting a picture of a skinnier version of yourself on the fridge, or a picture of that item you’re saving up for actually does work. If you place visual cues in places where you’ll see them when you are most tempted, it does help to boost your willpower.
Know Your Triggers
Everybody gets tired and grumpy and when you feel that way, you have very little willpower. Find out what tempts you the most and stay away from them when you aren’t feeling your best.
Happy New Year from Daltile!