Would you like to know how to make changes that actually stick ?
How often has this happened to you? You make a change, get really excited about it for a few weeks, and then … you’re kind of over it.
This is incredibly common — in fact, statistically most people would have broken their New Year’s resolutions already, just weeks after they’ve made them! But it is absolutely possible to make big changes that stick over the long term, and I’d love to tell you how to make that happen.
If you’ve decided that 2016 is going to be the year that you give up smoking or start exercising regularly, or lose the 10 kilos you have gained, or perhaps it is to work less and spend more time travelling or with your family – whatever your goal is read on.
Make sure it’s what you actually want
It’s so easy to get excited about a big change in your life, only to realise later that actually, that’s not something you really care about. To avoid this, don’t just approach your goals with your head — really tune in to your heart’s desire as you’re setting goals so that you don’t end up pouring a ton of time and energy into accomplishing something that’s not aligned with what YOU really want.
Start with the end in mind
Visualise how life would look if you were to move forward in time – see yourself already having achieved your goal – how would you look, how would you feel. By seeing yourself already having achieved whatever it is you want, it draws that end result to you like a magnet.
People who have successfully given up smoking start to see themselves as “non-smokers”. If you want to lose weight – start visualizing yourself back in your favourite outfit that you felt fantastic in. Hang the outfit on the outside of your wardrobe so you see it everyday as a reminder of what you are working towards. A client of mine who lost over 25 kilos on the HcG diet found a photo of herself when she was her ideal weight and put that on the fridge as a reminder everytime she went to the fridge that is how she wanted to look again – that lean sexy version of her was going to be her again.
Find your support network
Studies have shown that you’re much more likely to follow through with a change if you have people around you to support you with it. This is where your network comes in. Whether you need someone to watch your kids for an hour a week so you can go to a Pilates class, or find a friend to start walking with. Or get your partner on board to start the new eating plan together. Your network can be an invaluable source of support, so make sure you ask for their support.
Start with small stepping stones and build momentum with little wins
For example, starting a new exercise program – begin with a 20 minute walk and gradually build up or if you’re doing weight training – start with light weights. If you push yourself the first time back in the gym you might feel sore and uncomfortable after your first work-out – it’s a bit of a discouragement to go back and do it again.
Or you may want to lose 25 kg, however make your first goal to lose the first 5 kilos, then the second goal could be to lose another 10 kilos, and so on from there.
Build momentum. This is especially important at the beginning, or any time that you’re moving up to the next level of whatever your change is. You need to get a few little wins under your belt first thing so that you have the energy to keep going. The more you stick with it, the more you train yourself to keep doing it, which is just what you need to make big changes over the long term.
What are some big changes you want to make this year?