It’s easy to set goals but not always so easy to reach them. Why? Because dramatic and immediate changes are not sustainable long-term. Here are five tips for making changes you can stick with.
1. Do What You Enjoy
If one of your goals is to become more active, try to connect with what you enjoy. If you like being in nature, consider walking, hiking or running. If you took dancing as a child, give it another go! Try ballroom dancing lessons or a barre method class where you can let your inner ballerina shine. By reconnecting to things you love, the activity becomes fun and something you want to do.
2. Add Things,Don’t Remove Them
If your goal is to improve your nutrition to lose weight and boost energy levels, try adding foods into your diet like vegetables. Find fun ways to prepare them to fit your taste buds. If you start with a deprivation statement like, ‘I am going to stop eating all carbs,’ then all you’ll think about is carbs. When you introduce something new and start noticing the benefits, then you are often inspired to move on to add the next change.
3. Stop & Breathe
If one of your goals is to handle stress more successfully, trying to meditate every day for 45 minutes will likely be overwhelming. Instead try this simple strategy: upon waking in the morning, record in a journal or on your phone something you appreciate or that makes you happy. Read it out loud and then follow with five slow breaths and really feel that joy. This way you are starting a habit and getting your body used to what relaxation and being in a state of gratitude feels like.
4. Go to Bed 15 Minutes Earlier
Work on getting a good night’s rest. A healthy amount of sleep helps you be more alert, make better decisions, maintain a healthier weight and look and feel younger. Go to bed 15 minutes earlier each week for a month and you’ll add an extra hour of sleep.
5. Spend Your Time with Like-Minded People
Make an effort to spend more quality time connecting with family or friends. Individuals who have social connections suffer fewer symptoms of depression and may live longer, healthier lives.
Making these small changes can help you create habits to feel more energized, less stressed, think more clearly and make better choices. With each choice comes the opportunity to be the person you have always envisioned.