New Year, New You?

As another year comes to a close it seems like a good time to look back. I know a lot of people like to use New Years to implement some change in their lives. Perhaps it is going to the gym more or just spending more time with your family. I was never patient enough to wait until New Years to make change I really wanted to make. Instead, I would make changes all through the year. Why waste time? I think New Years is more of an excuse than a reason to change.

As a former gym rat I can tell you that the year always starts with a burst of new faces and a crowded gym. It is funny to me how everyone always looks like they are experts at running the equipment yet the just started. I thought that they just didn’t want to look like they have no idea what they are doing. Then one day it hit me. This is not the first time they had done this. Perhaps just a few years ago they did the same thing.

Why is it that we can’t keep our resolutions? I think there are many different reasons. First, I think that a lot of people receive their reward before they ever pay the price. If you go out and tell all of your friends that you plan to hit the gym and lose weight then all that support you have built up will give you instant gratification before you have accomplished anything. Sally will tell you that she is proud of you for doing something you haven’t even done yet.

Fear is another problem that hold people captive. Fear of change and fear of failure. What if you tell everyone that you are going to do something and then you don’t follow through? Will they think less of you? I know this is a problem I struggle with still. I like to keep my plans close to my chest so that nobody except me knows of my failure. If you do share your resolve to meet some challenge in your life then this will turn into one of your biggest motivations.

One of the greatest motivations you can find is a group of people going through the same challenge. A support group of people you trust that will hold you accountable. If your goal is to lose weight then find others that have the same goal and hold each other accountable. For me it was when I saw my dad lose the weight that he struggled for years to lose. At that point I could no longer tell myself that my problem was genetic and I was doomed to live a life being overweight.

Once you remove all the excuses you told yourself and believe that your goal is possible then take it one day at a time. My goal was to make each day a better day than the last. Results didn’t matter, effort did. I knew that over the long run that effort would make results.

The truth is that there is no goal that you will ever achieve then you’re done. There isn’t some goal weight that when I hit it, I no longer care about fitness or my diet. These resolutions should be permanent. You are a product of the decisions you have made up to this point in your life. If you don’t like where you are then you need to make different decisions. Choose to be that new you.

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