From Resolutions to Reality: Setting New Year's Goals that Stick
Ever made a New Year’s resolution and failed to follow through? Don’t worry, this is more common than you’d think. Some studies have shown that 80 percent of New Year’s resolutions fail by February. This is because resolutions are often made with no clear plan on how to achieve them. So, it can be helpful to set New Year’s goals instead!
But how can you make (and stick to) your New Year’s goals? Whether your goal is to get fit, take up a new hobby, learn a language, or even just wake up earlier – these five tips can help you turn your resolutions into reality this year:
1. Be specific when setting your goals
Instead of setting a big, ambiguous goal, choose a very specific and achievable goal. This makes it easier for you to plan exactly how you’re going to accomplish your goal over the course of the year. Make sure you’re clear on what you want to achieve, when you want to achieve it by, and most importantly the reason why.
For example, rather than deciding you want to lose body fat, or you want to get in shape, set a clear target for what this looks like. Make it your goal to lose 4% body fat by July, or sign up for a half marathon in June. Whatever your goal is, making a specific, concrete and achievable goal will set you up for success.
2. Break down your goals
Start small. It’s great to want to commit to big goals, but it makes it a lot easier if you break them down into smaller, specific goals that won’t take as long to accomplish. Depending on how big your goals are, you might need to break them down into several smaller goals in order to see them as achievable.
For example, if you want to lose 20kg by July, that can seem a little overwhelming and out of reach. However, if you break that down into losing 2-3kg per month , or 0.5-0.75kg a week, that seems much more doable.
On top of this, you should also break down your goals into actionable steps. So, on top of having your goal of losing 3kg per month, you should sit down and work out how you’re going to achieve this. You’ll need to be in a calorie deficit for this goal, so you’ll need to work out how many calories you should eat every day, while also setting yourself a daily physical activity goal.
This can all seem a little complicated – but good news is, you can work out how many calories and macros you need based on your Bodymapp health report! Firstly, find your TDEE – or Total Daily Energy Expenditure – which is the amount of calories you burn every day. You can find your estimated TDEE under ‘Benchmarks’ in your Bodymapp health report.
To calculate how many calories you should eat for weight loss, you should take your TDEE and subtract 15-20% from it. So, if your TDEE is 2500 calories, your weight loss calories would be about 2000 to 2125 calories. For weight gain, you do the opposite. Take your TDEE and add 15-20%. So, if your TDEE is 2500 calories, your weight gain calories would be about 2875 to 3000 calories. Download the Bodymapp app and get your first health report for free.
Once you’ve found your daily calorie and exercise goals, all you need to do is track these to hold yourself accountable. Apps like MyFitnessPal are great for keeping track of food intake, and wearable watches are a great way to track exercise goals.
3. Reward small wins along the way
Celebrating your progress is not only enjoyable, but it’ll also keep you motivated. A lack of motivation usually arises when we feel like we’re too far away from our goals. While breaking the goal up into smaller goals rectifies this to an extent, it’s also important to acknowledge and celebrate your small wins along the way.
Each time you check off a goal, celebrate in a way that you enjoy. Whether that’s simply checking off a checklist, treating yourself to that new piece of clothing you’ve had your eye on, or going out with a friend. Goals are hard work, and you deserve to treat yourself as you work towards them.
4. Check-in on your goals regularly
Setting measurable goals and checking in with how you’re progressing is essential in helping you stay on track. Checking-in is a time for evaluating your progress. This helps you assess how far you’ve come and determine what needs to happen to stay on track.
If you have a physical goal, set a goal in the Bodymapp app and then do a fortnightly or monthly check-in scan to track progress. Your progress automatically updates with each check-in scan, which will help you track your progress and stay focused on your goals. Plus, seeing whether or not you’ve made progress can help you determine if you’re on the right path, or if you need to adjust your approach.
5. Remember that change is a process
The path to achieving your goals will not always be straight. Yes, these tips will help motivate you to achieve your goals, but sometimes things don’t work out the way we plan.
If you encounter setbacks along the way, don’t view them as failure. Rather, look at them as an opportunity to learn and get back on track. Reflect on what hasn’t worked out and how you can change your approach in the future. Then, adjust your goals accordingly and keep moving forward.
Be patient with yourself. New habits aren’t formed overnight! Working towards your New Year’s goals is a process. Even if you make a misstep or two, you can pick yourself up, get back on the horse and continue your journey towards your goal. You’ve got this!