In the traditional ushering in of the new year, January has a particular sense of build-up and anticipation. There is an underlying feeling of seemingly unresolved motivations that surmount on the first of the new year. Resolutions, and pining for self- improvement seems to be at the precipice of everyone’s mind.
Personally, the first few weeks are filled with this superficial self-discipline and determination to truly change. As if this new calendar year will instantaneously cut off bad habits and, in its place, grow two new healthy habits. But the reality of the matter is that getting through this month takes time, and it takes genuine effort.
One of the best ways to steer into good habits is to stick to a plan. For example, joining a gym is a great kickstart in becoming a better version of yourself but, it can be daunting at first. This is a great first step, as regular exercise is linked with a reduction in anxiety, depression, and other mental health challenges.
But sticking to this new habit is where things can become difficult. Statistics from the Fitness Industry Association share that there’s a 12% increase of gym memberships in January, but by March most people have stopped going. This lull in motivation can be an Obstacle.
However, there are great ways to help form new habits for the new year. A study on how to form good habits conducted by Anouk van der Weiden suggests that good habits are formed over time. And that holds true. From a personal experience I know that the hardest part is getting started.
To combat this, I’ve found that finding a partner or friend who is willing to join you will add assurance, and motivation to this process.
Starting up a new year resolution does not have to be scary. If you’re like me, and you’ve been interested in tackling personal health this year, exercise is a great first step. My routine usually consists of waking up whenever I can and going for a quick 2 mile run, and in doing that I already feel more prepared to take on the day.
To help sustain a healthy lifestyle these components are integral to feeling motivated, and confident about yourself. An important thing to remember on this journey is that new year resolutions don’t have to be linear!
Getting up with the intention to do your best can go a long way, and if along the path you find yourself slipping up, don’t worry. In my opinion the best way to tackle that is just taking a day to reset, and know you can always start over.