It is the beginning of the year and what do many people feel inclined to make to kick it off? New Years Resolutions, that list of things you "plan" to do. A lot of people have resolutions involving behavioral changes they hope to make in the upcoming year. And I would argue a lot of these resolutions are health related. The gyms are packed with new faces the first few weeks and/or months of the year before the majority of these new faces vanish from the scene and only a few are left following through with resolutions and achieving the desired behavioral change.
What makes the difference? I believe there are many factors but the one I want to focus on today is our outlook. When we sit down and start to dream about all 2018 could offer, what type of mindset do we have? Is it positive or negative? I would argue that it is positive. We believe we can achieve the goals. For some that belief is grounded in the fact that they have a well thought out plan to achieve them. For others, it may be based on the fact that 2018 holds something magical that will produce the changes they want. Whether realistic or unrealistic it all starts with positive thinking. And that is what a person has to maintain throughout the year to succeed with the behavioral change. Adopting and maintaining positive thoughts as we encounter the many barriers and temptations to quit will not only help us meet the goals, but there is research that shows positive thoughts have a direct correlation to our health. (We will touch on this later.)
So my challenge for us all is to begin each day with positive thoughts about our desired behavioral changes for 2018. Here are just a few ideas: