Tuesday, February 11, 2014

new year's resolutions are stupid (not another "how to keep your resolutions" article)

I meant to write this post earlier. I don't like blogging when I'm in a crappy mood, though the case could be made that that is exactly the time I should be blogging. I don't want to come off sounding like a giant wanker though. So here it is: a New Year's resolution post in the middle of February.  Probably a good thing I didn't make a resolution to blog more.

I didn't make any resolutions.

Resolutions are a waste of time.

Why do gyms have all these New Year's sales? Do you know why SportChek suddenly starts sending out flyers for "all your workout needs"?  They are preying on the Resolutioners - the people who say "That's it! This year, I'm going to get in shape and lose X lbs!"

It can be alluring, the promise of a "new year, new you!"  Visions of eating everything that came into sight during the holiday seasons are still haunting you.  I'm not judging you - I walked into a WW meeting the first week of January myself, hungry for a change and feeling like shit about myself.  I just think there's a better way.

Stats are sketchy, but let's be real - how many times have you "resolved" something on New Year's and given up with a month or two? How has this resolution thing worked out for most people?  And really - how do people feel about themselves when they realize they have failed miserably? "This year is ruined!" 
"Screw you guys, I'm going home."

Aren't resolutions just glorified wishes?  "This year, it would be super cool if I could wear a bikini at the beach this summer!" What if you could actually set a goal and achieve it? Wouldn't that feel better than becoming a statistic? (Why is this post filled with so many questions? Did I just ask another one? And another one?!)

Here's the thing about goals: you don't have to wait until next January to make one. Or a bunch. You can make one for just today.  ("From now until midnight, I will eat less than 5 handfuls of chocolate chips.") And another one for just tomorrow.  ("My goal for tomorrow is to drink a cup of green tea whenever I am mad at something.") Bam. Done. I make goals for a living. (Pretty much. I'm serious) Don't worry if you're goal-making skills are a little rusty. Here are some tips for making some goals for yourself:
  •  Start small. Set a bar you can actually reach so you can get a little momentum.  If you normally eat an entire jar of Nutella every day, aim for 3/4 of the jar tomorrow?
  • Slowly raise the bar.  You'll know when it's time to up the ante.
  • Celebrate your success. You made it a week without putting sugar in your coffee, and it was hard, dammit! You deserve a prezzie. 
  • Don't beat yourself up if it doesn't happen. It's just a chance to tweak your expectations and focus your efforts. Maybe this isn't the best week to give up ice cream and chocolate.
So now's your chance, muffin! Whatever happened in the last forty-two days, fuggedaboudit. Right now, you have the opportunity to start something pretty radical.  When I started plugging away five years ago, I didn't know I'd be here.  Success is the sum of a bunch of small efforts. Stop rolling your eyes. You know I'm right.  Go make some damn goals. This is your sign.

Side note: I started another challenge through my gym.  Be scared. 

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