First, let me start by saying, I hate the term "New Year's resolution". I feel like it hypes us up only to let us down. If you are really passionate about setting a goal and achieving it, or changing your habits and your overall lifestyle, start NOW. Start TODAY. The way I see it, there would be no better way to kick off a new year than with a solid routine that's already been put into place AND PRACTICED. So if you are reading this post, I am giving you permission to begin working toward your goal or resolution RIGHT NOW.
The most popular category of resolutions fall under the umbrella of heath/weight loss/fitness... so let's start there.
Instead of making your goal, "lose 30 lbs," change it to smaller, more specific HABITS, like...
* Eat more salads/veggies/fresh fruits. I shoot to eat at least 5 salads a week either for lunch or dinner.
* Pack my lunch at least 3x a week instead of eating out on my lunch break.
*Limit my Starbucks runs to Friday mornings only, and all the other days, drink your coffee at home. I am probably the worst at this but I have found that bringing a second cup of coffee with me in a cute to-go cup helps with this a lot, because the habit is generally formed out of having a coffee in our hands while we drive. Often times, we may not even really WANT that Starbucks drink. It is an addiction. It is a very, very fattening and EXPENSIVE habit that needs to be broken ASAP.
*Invest in a Fitbit (affordable and worth every penny) and make it your daily mission to hit 10,000 steps a day. Even if this is the only "fitness" you can incorporate right now, its a start. And it a wonderful habit to be in. Make a commitment to always, always take the stairs when possible.
* When you are ready to tackle those fitness goals, start small. I am starting my personal fitness journey with 2 miles on the treadmill (walking,jogging, running, whatever) 20 sit ups, 20 crunches, 20 squats, and some light weight work for my arms.
*Go ahead and cut out fast food and soft drinks/sweet tea all together. Just do it and watch the weight melt off.
I believe that when it comes to food and fitness, we often bite off more than we chew, pun intended, and when we realize how hard it is to maintain this lifestyle day in and day out with kids, and jobs, and everything else, we give up and throw in the towel all together. Ever been there? I know I have, more than a few times. The cleanses, and the fad diets, and weight loss teas/shakes, etc. STOP spending your money on silly things like this and start using that money to pay for a gym membership, or extra veggies at the grocery. Practice making healthier choices and creating healthier HABITS and the weight will come off. I promise!
Another big resolution is to SAVE MONEY. At my young age of 25, I can give a lot of testimony on debt, savings, and credit. I'm going keep this simple though and tell you this...
*Only buy something if you love it.
*Bring your old clothes/shoes to consignment stores and pick up an extra bit of cash.
* Cancel subscriptions you no longer use.
*See post about Starbucks above ^^
*Talk to a banker about refinancing options for your house/car
*Turn off your lights...always.
*Only keep Cable if you REALLY use it.
*Save your change in a jar.
*Check your bank account and credit card statements regularly. Always check for errors or possible fraudulent activity.
*If you have a card or balance, you're paying interest on, apply for an interest free card and do a balance transfer to the interest free card.
These are all HABITS that you can get in the routine of instead of trying to accomplish something huge right away, like save $10,000 or pay off a $12,000 credit card. Little habits lead up to big savings.
Invest in your personal growth...this should be a goal for EVERY SINGLE PERSON, EVERY SINGLE DAY. If you think you are too good for personal growth, you are mistaken. We all have room to improve.
Personal growth can look different to everyone, for me, its investing time in my faith, health and knowledge. Find strength in doing things on your own...like eating, hiking or seeing a movie. It is so important to keep your mind sharp. Visit a local museum, take an art class, READ as much as you can. Travel, even if its a day trip to another city or a weekend trip to your neighboring state.
Many of us get caught up in making BIG changes and expecting results in a small amount of time. Break down resolutions into smaller habits and goals, and you will find that your resolutions are much more attainable and when you begin to live out a healthy routine, you'll find that you live a much more accomplished life.