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New year, new goals

Community news | Thursday, January 12, 2017

Every year when the New Year starts hundreds of thousands of people make a New Year’s resolution. Not to be a Debbie downer here, but only about eight percent of the resolutions made are actually achieved. The most common resolutions are for weight loss/fitness, organization and spending less money. I believe I have made each of these resolutions at one point or another. Here is a different idea for making resolutions this year. Instead of making one big goal, why not set a new goal each month?

It takes 21 days to form a new habit. This means that each month you have time to make one new healthy habit. By the end of 2017 you could potentially have 12 new habits. Breaking goals down into smaller, more manageable pieces increases the likeliness of successfully achieving your goal.

When creating a goal a good acronym to keep in mind is SMART. SMART stands for Specific, Measureable, Attainable, Realistic, and Time-based. A SMART goal would look something like this; In January, I will walk for ten minutes at lunch or after dinner five days a week.

The nice part about SMART goals is that your 12 monthly goals don’t have to be related if you don’t want them to be. Maybe one month you can work on organization and then the next month is fitness. Or maybe you are not successful the first month, try again. Goal setting is up to you.

Let’s make 2017 a year to remember by trying something totally new. Think of 12 things you would like to change, and how you can make that happen. Next, pick what month you want to work on that goal and write it down. Write it in a journal, on your calendar or wherever you will see the reminder every day. Once something is in writing you are more likely to actually do it. Last but not least, go get ‘em.

The New Year is a great time to make that change that you have been meaning to for a while. Don’t get frustrated if you aren’t successful right away. You have 365 days to improve whatever it is that you want. This year try to be part of the eight percent of people that successfully complete their New Year’s resolution. Good luck everyone!

Katie Verhaar
Community Health Educator
Scheurer Hospital