What is your New Year’s resolution? While this is an important question: The How? Where? Who? When? And Why? are just as significant as the actual resolution. About 40% of Americans make New Year’s resolutions. A University of Scranton research study suggests that just 8% achieve their goals.
In 2016, Facebook creator Mark Zuckerberg’s New Year’s resolution was to run 365 miles that year. This is equivalent to 10 marathons. While ten marathons may seem unattainable, Mark broke it down to bite-sized pieces, one mile per day which is approximately 10 to 12 minutes of daily running.
On the flip side, if Mark set his goal to 10 marathons, he may not have been part of the 8 percent who achieve their goals. Psychologists identify this as “false hope syndrome,” which means the goal is significantly unrealistic because we believe self-change is easy. While one mile per day is doable, 10 marathons is fantasy for most people. Here are my tips to put yourself in the 8% club!
Tip #1: Break your goal into bite-sized pieces. Make it attainable. One mile per day.
Tip #2 & #3: Don’t restrict yourself to a when and a where. Is your goal available morning, day, and night? Is it attainable in your house, backyard, neighborhood or community? Running is possible practically anytime and anywhere. And yoga is for that matter as long as you develop a home practice which by the way I can help you with.
Tip #4: Although you can run alone, it is important to be part of a community. Find some friends who will run with you. Some people rely too heavily on others when pursuing a goal which can make it restrictive on the when and where while others make the mistake of pursuing their goal alone without a support group. Find a balance. Run maybe one or two days with a friend or group of people and the remaining by yourself.
Weight loss or healthier eating habits is the most popular resolution according to Statistic Brain Research Institute. Why do so many people want to lose weight? Is it to look better, attract a mate and to live happily ever after? If you believe this then you are going to set yourself up for disappointment. While looking your best may make it easier to attract a mate it does not increase your likelihood of being happily married because this requires solid relationship skills. If you don’t believe me then you may be buying into the Hollywood dream world. When in fact looking good in Hollywood doesn’t guarantee “happily ever after,” look at Halle Berry, Whitney Houston and Angelina Jolie!
Tip #5: Be specific and clear in why you want something. Will the change truly bring you what you’re longing for? Losing weight might help you live a more comfortable active lifestyle. But it is not going to make you happy despite what you see in movies and advertisements. If you don’t make this distinction then your expectations will not be met when you accomplish your goal and you will most likely return to your old habits and gain the weight back you worked so hard to lose.
In 2017, I resolved to dance more. I bought pretty dresses to go to swing and salsa dance classes. Did I achieve my goal? I don’t think so. I did a lot of African dancing but that was about it. With kids, work, sleep, and life there was always an excuse not to go. I went to maybe four salsa classes and not one swing class.
Drum roll please . . . for 2018 my New Year’s resolution is to dance 1093 minutes plus continue with my regular African dancing. Yes, I am repeating my 2017 goal to dance more. Sometimes, you just need a redo.
How: I’ll dance one song daily which is doable. Approximately 3 minutes per day times 365 days equals 1093 total minutes or a little over 18 hours. I can do this. Attending 18 dance classes on top of my usual African dance classes in 2017 I could not do. Where: Anywhere: home, grocery, party, yoga studio or on the street versus driving to Tontitown or downtown Fayetteville for a class. When: Anytime. I teach yoga on Mondays and Fridays. If you want to get a little dancing in with me, come to my class 10 minutes early. Who: By myself, with my friends, kids, husband and anyone who wants to join me. Why: Because I love movement and music. When I dance, I feel free and alive. It just feels good.
Happy New Year’s all! Like my Facebook page if you want to follow me in my dance movement. If you want help with your goals or help developing a home practice in yoga shoot me an email. One of our teachers can work with you privately. Together we can raise the roof and change the statistics.
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