You may have heard that 80% of New Year’s Resolutions have been found to fail by February. Not surprisingly, many of these resolutions center around leading a healthier lifestyle. After all, we all know that a combination of clean eating and exercise can add years to our lives and reduce our risks of developing certain health problems. So, how can you beat the odds in 2020 and finally achieve your goal of leading a healthier lifestyle? Your best bet is to focus on turning the behaviour you want into a habit. Here are our tips to help you get there.
Get SMART About Your Resolutions
Setting goals is essential for resolution success but not all goals are created equal. To give yourself the best chance at success, set SMART goals. SMART is an acronym for specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound. So, what does all of this mean?
- Specific: If your goal is vague, you’re much less likely to be able to define success. Therefore, get specific about what you want to achieve. Instead of saying “I want to lead a healthier lifestyle in 2020,” try “I want to prepare at least three healthy recipes per week in 2020.”
- Measurable: We’ve all heard the old saying, “What gets measured gets done.” Well, it turns out that it’s not only true but also essential for goal-setting. As such, it’s important to make your goal measurable and then measure your success. If you were specific about your goal, chances are that success is measurable. In the example above, you’ll easily be able to measure whether you prepared three or more healthy recipes each week.
- Achievable: If you’re currently ordering in or stopping by the drive-through on most evenings, setting a goal to prepare a healthy recipe every night of the week is unlikely to lead to success. Sure, you might be able to achieve this during some weeks but during others, life is going to get in the way. So, be ambitious but be realistic as well.
- Relevant: One of the reasons that people don’t stick to their resolutions is that they resolve to do things that aren’t relevant to them. That is, they base their resolutions on something that society says they should change. Reaching an arbitrary weight goal is one of these resolutions. Sure, it might be specific, measurable and achievable but if it doesn’t really matter to you, it’s not relevant. In this case, something like preparing three healthy recipes per week might mean more to you because you can feel the difference the clean fuel makes to your body.
- Time-bound: Not only should your goal be specific, but the timeline within which you’d like to achieve it should be specific too. Again though, it’s important to make sure that you’re setting an achievable timeframe.
Make a Plan and Break It Down
Setting a SMART goal for your 2020 resolution is just half the battle, now the fun begins and you have to achieve that goal! The recipe to success is to make a plan by breaking your goal down into a series of smaller tasks that build upon one another. Back to our example, if you’d like to start preparing healthy meals instead of hitting the drive-through, one of your tasks might be to look for some healthy salmon recipes online. If you select a few recipes and print or save them, you can build a grocery list, pick up those groceries, and then cook one of those meals. Each of these tasks builds upon the last and makes your goal much less daunting to tackle. Performing the small task of taking 15 minutes to look for new healthy recipes on a regular basis makes it much more likely that you’ll prepare healthy meals and this is how you build a habit over time.
With your SMART goals and plan in hand, you’re much more likely to succeed with your resolutions. Just remember to refer back to them and make sure you’re measuring your success. And if you really are resolving to prepare healthy meals in 2020, let us give you a head start with our favourite healthy recipes: Cauliflower Mac and Cheese, Wild Rice Pea Salmon Salad, and Thai Chili Sardine Pita Pizza.