Take a minute and think about what you want and need. It's time to make that happen. Set general New Year's resolutions -- or goals -- that won't overwhelm you. Following are a few suggestions.
Try skipping the perfect weight resolution. Sure, it's nice to have a number in mind -- whether that's losing a certain number of pounds or reaching a particular weight -- but it is very easy to become discouraged if you're not making the progress you hoped for. Make your resolution general: "I'm going to take better care of myself by eating well and moving every day."
Instead of setting specific diet goals, aim to eat healthier by cutting back on one or two bad habits at a time, such as soda with meals or dessert after dinner. Make a resolution to fit in some form of physical activity every day. Don't pledge that you're going to spend 45 minutes working out six days a week. Instead, work physical activity into your daily life: park on the opposite side of the parking lot and walk or take the stairs instead of the elevator. If these aren't choices that you make regularly, you're improving your health in small but important ways. Everything adds up and you're not setting yourself up for failure.
Give yourself time to slowly work through your wardrobe. Are you hanging onto clothes that are too small, hoping that one day you'll be able to rock your (literal) skinny jeans? Do yourself a favor and rid your closet of these self-esteem damagers. If reaching an old size is important to you -- and realistic -- then you can reward yourself with a new pair of jeans when you get there.
Do you have a section of emergency clothes -- items that are a size (or three) too large? If you're keeping these just in case, clear them out. Assuming you will need them eventually means you're assuming you will gain weight. The power of positive thinking is strong…and so is the power of negative thinking.
Resolve to give yourself a little bit of "me" time each day. Even 15 minutes to clear your mind and focus on yourself will positively impact the way you feel. While you might think of a million other things you should do, push that nagging voice to the back of your head and enjoy a small amount of time for yourself every day.
Lofty New Year's resolutions often result in defeat, but small and meaningful goals will help you take better care of yourself. Decide what is important to you and prioritize yourself in 2011.
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