5 Steps To Reach Your New Year’s Resolution

Jan. 4, 2024

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It is never too late to make lifestyle changes to improve your mental and physical well-being. A new year can be a great time to start. 

Catherine Maynard, an RN and certified health and wellness coach at BlueCross BlueShield of South Carolina, talks with members about making healthy changes. She shares some tips for making and sticking to a New Year’s resolution. 

1. Start small. 

Don’t start off with a lofty goal. Set smaller, more manageable goals to start off. For example, instead of setting out to lose 100 pounds, Maynard suggests aiming to lose 1 pound per week. 

Setting goals that are measurable is also important. One method is to create SMART goals: 

  • Specific 
  • Measurable 
  • Achievable 
  • Relevant 
  • Time-bound

Break down your goal into smaller, manageable intentions. Don’t set a goal that is too difficult that you can’t reach it. 

You don’t have to give something up or make a change. You can start something new. Learn a new skill or improve on a habit or hobby. 

Explore what you either want to learn or change and then decide if you want to turn that into something to accomplish over the next year.

2. Plan ahead. 

New Year’s resolutions can be stressful for some people. Start the year with a plan for how you want to reach your goal. Write it down. This will help you stick with it. 

If you want to lose weight, how are you going to do that? If you want to declutter your home, how do you plan to do that? Ask yourself how you plan to make these changes work in your life. 

3. Seek support. 

Any big change can be difficult. Having support can make all the difference. Include friends, family or coworkers in your resolutions. Or find online groups for ideas and support. 

Find resources to help make the change. For example, you can find tips for improving sleep, having a healthy gut, managing your A1C or starting a running program on our blog. BlueCross’ health and wellness coaches can also help members navigating lifestyle changes to improve their health.  

Talk to your doctor before starting any diet or exercise program. 

4. Check in on your progress. 

Set check points for your goals. At the end of the month, ask yourself how you are doing with your goal. Keep moving forward if you feel like everything is on-track. And if not, adjust your approach or change your goal. 

A lot can happen in a year. Give yourself the grace to make mistakes. There isn’t any shame in needing to change your resolution. 

You may not always stick to the resolution, but that is OK. Give yourself a break and get back on track if you still want to achieve that goal. 

5. Reward yourself. 

Treat yourself after your check-ins. Make a small reward for sticking with your goal. That might be an incentive to stay on track. 

Give yourself a pep talk and keep going.

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