The first of the year is a tie where people plan to put into action the changes they’ve been wanting to make all year. They make plans, they set resolutions, but as the months pass by, they lose motivation. To start a change is a wonderful thing, but you don’t need to wait for a specific date or sign to begin to change your life. But, since most people do start their “new” lives after the first of January, here are some ways to stay motivated throughout the entirety of the year:
1. Remember why you started.
There is a reason you started the journey you are about to embark on. Maybe you want to be healthier by losing weight, maybe you want to be organized to further yourself in your career, maybe you want to be more focused academically, whatever it is, you decided you needed to make the change to better yourself. This is your motivator, never lose sight of that or you will never reach your goals because you will not feel like it matters anymore. Write yourself a sticky note with your own personal reason and keep it on your fridge, your mirror, somewhere you will constantly be able to see it. Make a quote page on Canva and make it your phone/laptop background. Constantly seeing your reason for the journey will help you stay on the path.
2. Join a support group.
Joining a support group, while not for everyone, is a great way to stay motivated. It doesn’t have to be an in person group or anything, there are plenty of online forums of people trying to reach the same goal as you that are willing to share their experiences and help you. My personal favorite is a subreddit called r/loseit. It is a forum about people losing weight, their journeys, how they do it, and why they do it. It inspires me because it is real people relating my specific goal to their real life. It shows me I can do it and keeps me motivated to reach my goals too.
3. Track your progress.
Journaling isn’t for everyone but it is a very useful tool if your goals requires daily work and making sure your on track. You can also use your phone apps like google docs, excel, or just notes to keep track of your progress. You can have pages like a daily habit tracker to make sure the few set goals you are setting for yourself, you are achieving and working towards every day. For me, I want to lose weight, so I have a calorie tracker, weight tracker, food log, exercise log, and mood log. This allows me to keep track of my progress as well as see what workouts and food help with journey and what hinders it.
4. Find an accountability buddy.
Having someone to keep you accountable will help you incredibly, especially if you know you give up early on goals if you don’t see results immediately. An accountable buddy can be someone you text every day just to let them know you went to the gym or cleaned your room. It can be someone that has the same goals and you physically work towards them together. It can be a family member, friend, or someone from support group. It works wonders to have a slight pressure to report to someone that you are actively sticking to something.
5. Re-assess you goals.
Starting off with a huge goal is a bit daunting and it is more likely that you will not succeed. If you are trying to lose 50 pounds, split it up into 5 pound goals and due dates. This makes it way more manageable and not as scary. Having smaller goals will allow you to achieve them more easily and be proud and motivated of your progress instead of having a huge goal hanging over your head. It is ok to start small, any progress is big progress.
Here’s to you and to 2019. I hope you reach your goals and even beyond your goals. You’ve got this.