Did you even try a New Years Resolution?
Written by Dr. Larry
“H eather Holmes and I talk about New Years Resolutions every year for KTVU, including reviewing SMART criteria for your goals, and how writing down your goals and posting them where you can see them increases the likelihood of you achieving them. You can review those articles and videos here. (https://doctorlarry.com/articles/how-to-keep-your-new-years-resolutions/)
But when it comes to making New Year’s Resolutions for 2021, I want to pause this year, and ask you 3 questions before jumping into this annual ritual.
1. IS NOW THE RIGHT TIME FOR THIS?
When it comes to behavior change in medicine, like diet, exercise and weight loss–one of the first things I ask my patients before we even discuss breakfast or their warmups, is–is now a good time. Because many times, it’s not. Maybe it’s just too busy at work or there has been a death in the family. Perhaps someone just got out of the hospital and doesn’t have the energy. OR MAYBE YOU’RE JUST TRYING TO SURVIVE THIS PANDEMIC, with kids at home and your favorite wine bar shut down. Whatever the reason, contrary to memes on the gram, Now isn’t always the right time. Check in with yourself here before proceeding.
2. PAY ATTENTION (MINDFUL) OF HOW YOU TREAT YOURSELF.
That relationship with the self, specifically, how you talk to yourself, how you reward and punish yourself. Turns out, negative reinforcement is not nearly as powerful as the positive. Yes, sometimes we need that drill sergeant from FULL METAL JACKET to get our butts to the gym (HOW TALL ARE YOU, PRIVATE COWBOY? 5-10 sir. I DIDN’T KNOW THEY STACKED SHIT THAT HIGH), but in the long run, us talking to ourselves like that does NOT bring us closer to our goals.
3. DON’T DO IT ALONE.
Pandemic isolation is killing us, mentally, emotionally. If you’re ready to go after a goal, get a buddy or partner.
A coach or trainer. A buddy to run or workout with. To shoot hoops, play tennis or trade making healthy dinners every other Wednesday with. Add a social element to it, someone you can have fun with and hold each other accountable.
The hit to social interactions of COVID has been hard enough, this is a good way to push back.
We got this!