It’s the first day of the New Year and we’re already killing it (in a good way) with our goals! Somehow I’ve got to figure out how to keep that momentum going. I’m sharing a few tips on how to stay motivated and keep winning with our New Year’s resolutions. Did you see my first post of the series on creating habits? In THIS post I shared how to make goals that you’ll actually stick to. Now that we’ve decided on our goals, I’m going to share how to stick with them for the long haul.
This is obvious and easier said than done. But, may I suggest that most of “commitment” lies in our decision to commit in the first place. And, is less about action than we think? I’m suggesting commitment is mostly mental. This is where we channel our inner stubbornness and make it work for us! The folks at Whole30 had it absolutely right when they made the rule of 30 days no slip ups, no cheats, no excuses. They call it tough love, and insist on it for so many reasons. Here are a few benefits I see from making a bold, no mess-ups commitment.
- Going prolonged periods with no slip ups creates and helps solidify your goal into becoming an actual habit.
- You see results that you would have otherwise missed out on.
- You see results faster.
- The overall process is easier. That’s right, I said EASIER.
Well, you only have to make the decision to act on your goal once. That’s it. You’ve made the decision. Done. No questions asked. And when you’re approached with the option to not stick to your goal, you throw that option out easily and readily because you’ve already made up your mind. You are going to stick to your goal. If you continually give yourself the option of backing out on your goal, eventually you will. Make your decision once, and stick to it.
There are MANY different things that keep me motivated, it’s not just one thing. I have found if something isn’t working for my motivation it’s okay to try something else. I’m talking about motivators here, not your actual goal. Don’t let your motivators turn into a chore, rather let them be the icing on the cake, figuratively ;).
Just about everything in life is easier when done with other people. They can cheer you on, give you great ideas, you’ll see their successes and know what you’re aiming for is achievable, and knowing that others are counting on you often gives us a little boost of strength we didn’t know we had. There are many ways to join a community. Maybe that means your spouse or best friend is going to eat clean with you. Maybe a friend from work is willing to hit the gym with you before or after work. If you can’t find someone in real life to join in on your efforts start an Instagram or Facebook profile specifically so you can post about your journey and follow others doing the same thing. Did you know this is exactly how and why Whole Fork was started? I never intended on having a blog, I just wanted to join a community of fellow whole food eaters. These communities will give you inspiration, motivation, and help hold you accountable. It’s the reason why I keep maintaining Whole Fork today! If you’re looking for a community to join head over to my Instagram account and lets connect!
There are fun ways to join a community, like taking a class, going to a lecture or talk, entering in an event. These are all ways you can connect with local people that have the same goals and interests you do. All my fellow health food blogging friends I’ve met at actual events, cooking classes, whole food lectures etc. Rather than being virtual friends, we’ve become actual friends and they are some of my best supporters.
Use visual cues to keep your head in the game. Maybe that means putting up inspirational sayings. I like making a list of all the reasons I wanted to start my goal in the first place. I saw this idea from @veemoze on Instagram where she made a 30 day countdown with inspirational sayings. I took this a step further, and listed all the successes I’ve seen previously by eating clean. Essentially, these are all the reasons why I’m sticking to whole foods for 30 days. These will serve as daily reminders as to why I started this in the first place, and all the reasons why I should keep going.
My husband writes his goals in his Franklin Day Planner, which he uses daily. He also write long term goals on our bathroom mirror, using whiteboard markers. Whatever type of visual cue you decide to use put it in a strategic spot to serve as a constant reminder.
Some other visual cues include things like reading blogs, books, magazines that are specific to your goal. By constantly submersing yourself in the material you keep yourself focused, free of distraction, and yes motivated. This is where I’ve turned my goals into hobbies. I read a lot of heath books, recipe books and food blogs. This also helps me stay part of the community, and connect with other people so really it’s a double win!
Plan B is where I make a plan for when things get tough. And at some point, things will get tough and you’ll want to quit, or slip up. Because life. In the context of avoiding processed sugary foods I have several plan B’s for different situations, and they look something like this:
- Things got busy and I need a dinner I can throw together in 10 minutes: PLAN B – In my weekly meal plan I’ll have a few meals like this where I can throw something together really fast, and usually in 1 pot. For example:
- Work is crazy busy, and you might not have time to grab lunch: PLAN B – I always keep an RxBar in my purse or desk for these emergency situations. I make sure I drink a full glass of water while eating these, and they’ll keep me tide over until my next meal.
- Friends want to get together and meet at a restaurant: PLAN B – I’ve made a list of restaurants that I can suggest to the group where I know I can find something to eat. Steak houses are always a great suggestion. You can order a steak, salad with olive oil and vinegar on the side, and a plain baked sweet potato.
- You’re having dinner at your parents: PLAN B – Plan on bringing a side dish you know you’ll be able to eat. Here are several of my favorites, perfect for parties or gatherings, and they won’t look at you like the freak that brings health food to a party.
- You have had a crazy busy day and cannot bring yourself to cook dinner, let alone do dishes: PLAN B – remember the list you made in step 3, those restaurants? That’s your answer. Or, leftovers. Either way, you’re sticking to your goal.
I hope you’ll find these tips helpful. These are all things I’ve learned on my own journey, and some I had to learn the hard painful way. Good luck with your goals!
Happy New Year ~Tiffany