Say Hello to a Healthier 2022

Saying goodbye to another year and welcoming a New Year with motivation and excitement to make changes? Let’s face it, 2021 wasn’t all we had hoped and it seemed to bring more struggles and frustrations, which often make it hard to stick to our health goals. Being and staying healthy is on everyone’s mind, even more so these days. So let’s welcome 2022 with a goal of positivity and progress!
 

 Most people tend to focus on health-related resolutions but New Year’s resolutions can also focus on taking steps for planning for the future, completing projects that have been put off far too long or being more aware of our mental health. 
 

Whatever your resolutions are, how can you set yourself up for success?
 

Here are some tips:
 

1.       Write down your resolution. The very first thing you should do is write down what exactly your resolution is and keep it in a spot that will bring it top of mind. This simple visual reminder is a great way to stay on track. 

2.       Write down the pros and cons of completing this resolution.  For instance, if you want to add something into your life – like exercise, eating more vegetables or being more grateful – take the time to evaluate if this is really something you want to tackle. 

3.        Write down why this is important to you.  Sometimes we make resolutions because we just think we should be doing them.  But finding out why exactly this change is important to you can help you stay motivated throughout the ups and downs of the process of change. 

4.       If you were to complete this resolution, what does that look like to you? Envision what your life will look and feel like after completing your resolution and write that down. 

5.       Try setting small resolutions to reach your overall goal.  For instance, if you are wanting to eat more vegetables and currently you aren’t eating any then start with a smaller goal of trying to eat a vegetable for 2 out of the 7 days of the week.  Then bump that goal up once you feel like you have it down. 

6.       If you have someone who you know you can trust and will encourage you, share your resolution plan with them.  Ask them to help you stay motivated and to reach your goal. 

7.       After doing all of the above, write your resolution into a SMART goal.

S stands for specific. Make your resolution or goal as specific as possible. 

M stands for measurable. A stands for attainable. R stands for realistic and T stands for time. 

Using the vegetable and grateful example, the SMART goals could be worded like this: “I will consume 3 different vegetables this next week” or “I will write down one thing I am thankful for on Monday and Friday for one month”.  You can easily measure and see if you reached this goal or not. Compare this to a general goal of “I will eat more vegetables” or “I want to be more grateful”.  There is no way to truly measure that goal and if you completed it. SMART goals can improve success and show you where you may need to tweak your goal.

8.       If you don’t reach your goal, try to think about what happened that prevented you from reaching the goal and find solutions to those obstacles. Was the goal really realistic? Was it just an unusually bad week and next week would be better? Is there something you need to do to make the goal more attainable?

9.       Don’t beat yourself up over not reaching the goal right away. Progress is the key and that can take time.  

10.   Reward yourself along the way! Small goals with little rewards can help some people stay motivated. It could be something small like telling your friend you accomplished the goal, buying a new blender to make smoothies or even writing yourself a note that says “You did it”!! 
 

Tera Moorehead is the Director of Community Outreach at Ridgecrest Regional Hospital. With dual master’s degrees in nutrition and education, Tera shares her passion for health and wellness through various programs offered free to the community through RRH. You can contact her at 760-499-3825.