A New Year, A New Resolution

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With the first few months of 2015 already through and another semester underway, it might be difficult to keep those New Year’s resolutions going. Just like with any big challenge in life, there are numerous little things we can do to help us succeed. Even if you already have let the resolution slip, don’t give up! With these simple tricks, it will become easier to keep it up, and make and achieve new ones as well.

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Start small and start real

Start out with resolutions that you can almost guarantee you will keep. Want to lose weight this year? Start out by adjusting your diet. Don’t use it as a punishment, but instead eat in moderation. Craving those extra cookies? Switch them out with some fresh grapes or your other favorite kind of fruit. Over time and the more often you do this, the easier the choice becomes.

If your goal is to lose weight and get that beach body ready for spring break, instead of scheduling workouts for every day of the week, start slow. Set up three or four days a week where you workout. Slowly developing the amount of physical activity you participate in permits your body time to build up and rest up, increasing results.

Extra tip if you’re trying to get that beach body for spring break, take a picture of yourself before you start, don’t look at it till you take the next one two weeks later. The changes occur slowly so we aren’t as likely to notice the change, it helps to have a point of reference.

One challenge at a time

Bad habits don’t appear overnight. They won’t disappear instantly either. More often than not, our resolutions have to do with our bad habits. We try to change so many things at once that we become overwhelmed. Instead, work towards changing one thing at a time. Focusing on one major end goal with plenty of smaller ones along the way. And don’t forget to enjoy those successes.

Don’t be shy about it

Share your experiences. Talk to your friends and family about what you are planning and trying to achieve. Research has shown the more people you tell, the more likely you are to keep up with your goals. Talking to people might also help you create a support network of people who are trying to achieve the same goal. One good way of doing this is by joining a support group or participating in classes.

Ask for support

Don’t be scared to ask for help, and more importantly, be willing to accept help. Receiving strength and support from your friends and family and knowing they are there to listen to you will strengthen your resilience and ability to manage the stress that your new year’s resolutions might bring you. If the stress or discomfort becomes so large that you feel like you don’t have enough support, you can always seek the help of a professional psychologist. Psychologists are uniquely trained to understand the connection between the mind and body. They can offer advice and techniques to help you achieve your goals and properly address any additional issues that may arise.

Don’t bring yourself down

The road to success is paved with choices. Not every choice we make along the way will be perfect, so don’t bring yourself down if you miss a workout or broke your diet once. Everyone has ups and downs in life. The trick is to get back on track as quickly as possible and not give up.

At the end of the day, the only thing really necessary for us to succeed is to be perseverant, celebrate the little victories, be willing to ask for help and accept support from those around us. In the end, when the sum of our choices end positively, we will have achieved our new year’s resolution and be ready to strive towards our next goal.

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About Author

Hi! My name is Aaron Martes. If you translate my name to English it would be Aaron Tuesday, hence the name of my column Tuesday's psychology. I'm currently a second semester junior majoring in Forensic Psychology. I'm originally from the island of Aruba. FIT has literally been a home away from home. On campus I'm an active member of the Alpha Tau Omega fraternity, president of the surf club, and work in various offices across campus. The best part about being here at Florida Tech is the ability to combine your passions with your hobbies and make the most of my college experience.

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