Happy New Year, but no resolutions thank you!

Fireworks

lumpi / Pixabay

Are you like me? Have you made New Year’s resolutions with good intentions but you weren’t able to keep them? The road to hell, you know …

I asked Allison Basile, a psychotherapist in Brunswick, why some people have such a hard time sticking with their resolutions.

“To simply have a desire to change does not mean you are ready to change,” she said. “Resolutions are wishes and may not be rooted in a willingness to alter behaviors that are comfortable or comforting.”

So all those times I (and maybe, you) resolved to eat better, exercise more, get to bed earlier — we didn’t really want to change our ways?

A few years ago, I interviewed a health coach. She told me that if you want to make a change, it’s important to understand why. She said she learned that lesson from one of her first clients. The woman was 32 years old, weighed 350 pounds, had high cholesterol and diabetes. When she asked her about her goals, she expected her client to simply say, “Lose 200 pounds and exercise.”

Instead, the woman started to cry and told her she wanted to go to the park and go down the slide with her kids. It was a tangible goal that she was able to imagine, hold onto and work toward. I think it’s a lesson for all of us and yes, she reached her goal.

I used to make New Year’s resolutions, but not anymore. Not because there aren’t things I’d like to change. There are plenty, but I want to act on them when it feels right, not because it’s what you’re supposed to do at the beginning of a new year.

To give myself a little credit, even if I can’t manage New Year’s resolutions, I have learned something over the years about achieving goals.

For instance, four years ago, I set a goal to write this health and wellness blog. It has grown with every year. I put a lot of work into it, but really, you are behind its success. Thank you for taking the time to read Catching Health and thank you for your motivation and inspiration.

And whether you make resolutions or not, Happy New Year!

I’d like to share a quote I keep by my desk. (It was on a card my sister Cathy sent me a few years go when I was faced with a difficult decision.) For me, it’s far better than a resolution and I try to live by it all year long. It’s about trusting yourself.

Goethe quote

Image by Foundry / Pixabay

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Diane Atwood

About Diane Atwood

For more than 20 years, Diane was the health reporter on WCSH 6. Before that, a radiation therapist at Maine Medical Center and after, Manager of Marketing/PR at Mercy Hospital. Now she writes the award-winning blog Catching Health with Diane Atwood.