January – where the devil have you gone? Yes, it’s the month that so many of us fillies use as a time to reset, with that ever-so cliche “new year, new me” mantra. We clamber for a resolution that we hope will eventually magic us into the best version of ourselves. Whether it’s cutting down or, shock horror, cutting OUT takeaway foods, giving your phone less screen time, or probably one of the most common New Year resolutions of them all – hitting the gym harder than Anthony Joshua, like the camp pants you are! But now that the New Year is in full swing, what’s the key to making sure you stick to your resolutions? How DO you make “resolutions” into, well, PERMANENT life choices that then become second nature? Click this way and find out the five ways to ensure your resolutions stick this year…
According to a YouGov study, by January 6th, one in five people have already failed to stick to their resolutions, and in 2017, six in ten of us failed to keep our New Year’s resolutions by December. EEK!!! So as we are nearing the end of the month – now’s the perfect time to get back on track, whether you have fallen off the “New You, New You” or “New You, Fresh Start”, as we coined it here at FDJ LDN, wagon!
But why is it so dang difficult to stick to our New Year resolutions hey? Is it just a case of we simply cannot be arsed to become queen or king of the meal prep game, or the thought of heading to the gym after a long day at work makes us die a little inside? Whatever it is that is stopping us meeting our goals, how can we overcome those hurdles and nail our resolutions in 2019? Well, here are our five ways to kick those pesky resolutions butts this year!
Don’t be quick to give up!:
Let’s be honest, nothing can scupper your resolutions quicker than you can say “January Blues” than the combination of uber dark nights, cold weather and the lack of festivities that made the end of the year ROCK and the beginning of the year SUCK! Therefore January makes it an extra tough time to begin and carry on our New Year resolutions.
If one of your resolutions is to get more active, by downloading the government’s ‘Couch to 5k’ app, or simply making an effort to ditch the car more often, you may feel like it’s a little less chore. Because by making smaller changes than “I’m going to smash the gym every. single. day”, you are making your resolution a lot more attainable and easier to step up gradually. By making smaller steps in January, you are laying a pathway to build it up each month. And each month will bring warmer weather and lighter nights too! So you will be more in the mood to head to the gym, rather than hibernate under your blanket. Which, by the way, is absolutely normal, as when it’s dark our bodies naturally want to go into hibernation. It is, like, total scientific fact people!
So, use January as the month to plan ahead and set goals for yourself throughout the course of the year. Therefore you won’t feel like you have failed to nail your resolutions just because you didn’t work out every day. Think of it as laying the foundations for your future success this year! For example, start looking up what gym classes you can attend, nature walks you can go on, or what goals you plan to reach by when. By making plans and having achievable goals this will motivate you into going out and smashing them.
Make it fun!:
I don’t know about you – but if I feel like something is chore, it’s going to fast because a bore (yes, I just rhymed – and what?). For me, and I’m sure you’re the same, the key word in anything that can light me up and make me do something is the word “FUN”. If it is deemed fun, I am there! And that seems to be what can be lacking from the many resolutions we make for ourselves. Gym = pain, not fun. Eating healthy = boring, not fun!
So to get all Mary Poppins on you and paraphrase her wisdom – for every resolution that must be done, there has to be an element of fun and…SNAP! The resolution is a game – fun, do-able and “keepable”! We have to find ways to be able to trick your brain into thinking unappealing tasks are ‘fun’ and pleasurable.
So find dance or clubbercise classes, grab your friends and make that exercise feel like a night out with the girls. If your aim is to cut down on takeaways, find recipes to create healthier “fakeaway” versions of your favourite dishes. Try swapping your chocolate and sweets fix for equally sweet-tasting food, such as fruit. Masterchef it up and get creative in the kitchen which will make you feel excited to eat healthy.
Don’t overthink it:
When you originally made your resolutions, I’m guessing you were thinking positively and imagining the good impact these changes would be towards being a better you. What you are probably doing now is overthinking about them! Things like “I’m not doing enough”, “I haven’t got enough time” or the worst…”People are doing better than I am, I am failing”! Overthinking can be counter-productive to your success as you are likely to think about problems and scenarios that put you off, for example, not having the time or feeling tired after work.
Therefore, plan ahead for your inner self-saboteur! Think of any negative thoughts that may arise, write them down and you will avoid overthinking and believing you can’t do it – because you can do anything you set your mind to! For instance, if you put off going to that spin class alone because you’re worried you’re not fit enough, the biggest hurdle is getting there and giving it a go. The worst that could happen is that you have to stop to take a breather, which is perfectly fine as everyone will be at different stages. Taking a break is better than not going at all, as any workout is better than none! By taking manageable baby steps you’ll be surprised by how far you can go and how you can “ssshhhh” that inner negative voice!
Make it a habit:
According to a UCL study, it takes 66 days to form a new habit. That’s over 2 months – when January, and probably those resolutions you made, are a distant memory! So the best way for the action or resolution to become a habit is that you must repeat it for those 66 days.
The same goes for kicking those pesky bad habits that might be your resolution, such as giving up smoking or drinking. According to the National Institutes of Health, an effective strategy to help kick bad habits, is to replace them with new healthy routines. A veritable win-win situation all round!
So why not get those cheeky extra 100 steps in for the day by making it part of your daily commute, by getting off your bus, tube or train a stop earlier. Or why not replace your sneaky cigarette break with a swift walk around the office to distract you, or you could even consider purchasing a Juul device kit, which gives the same feeling as smoking but is considerably better for your health.
Change your mindset:
It is so gosh darn easy to focus on the negative in life than the positive right? But now is the perfect time to change your way of thinking. For instance, instead of leaping to negative thoughts, such as “oh, that’s another thing for my to-do list”, think of that extra thing as something you are claiming back in your life. As a result, you force yourself into thinking you are getting back something you have lost, so you must make time for it – this is known as “loss aversion”, which is essentially favouring ‘avoiding loss’ over ‘acquiring gain’.
So if one of your New Year resolutions is to read more books, instead of spending hours each day endlessly scrolling through social media, put the phone in a drawer, reclaim time and pick up that book filly!!! Find those pocket’s of time in the day you would fill with inane mindless scrolling and invest it in your book – whether it’s on your daily commuter grind or even whilst you’re on your lunch break, where you find a quiet place to sit and escape into literature.
So my fair fillies, if you don’t smash all your 2019 goals to the max, please don’t be way harsh on yourself and beat yourself up about it! Take a positive, healthy moment and look at what you HAVE managed to achieve: If you only made it to the gym once a week when you said you’d go for 5, it’s okay. If you said NO takeaways and had 2 instead of the usual every other day – heck you are winning! And if you managed to make it out of bed and brush your hair – you are my hero! Sometimes it’s the smallest steps that lead to bigger results in the end!
Until next time fillies,
Leigh at Fashion Du Jour LDN HQ x
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