New Year, New Resolutions
Although about 45% of us make resolutions each New Year, only about 8% of us are successful in achieving them. Many of us want to make changes in our lives, but we have trouble sticking with it and making it happen. Research shows that men do better at keeping their resolutions if they make a specific goal and women do better if they make their goal public and get support. Everyone benefits from setting goals that are achievable and easy to define.
Having trouble coming up with a resolution? Health.com made a list of the 10 healthiest resolutions:
- Lose weight – this is the single best thing most of us can do for our health. Achieving and maintaining a healthy weight reduces our risk of diabetes, heart disease and many other serious health issues. Websites like SparkPeople offer support and resources for healthy weight loss.
- Stay in touch – keeping connected to family and to friends makes us feel good, reduces stress and actually helps us live longer. We live in an era when staying connected has never been easier, so keep in touch.
- Quit smoking – smoking is one of the hardest habits to break, but it is worth the hard work for your health, and your wallet. Check with your health insurance provider to see if they have a program that might work for you. Kaiser Permanente’s is called Breathe.
- Save money – the steps we take to save money often have the double benefit of being healthy. Quitting smoking, walking or biking instead of driving or cutting out your daily latte can save you money and improve your health.
- Cut your stress –Stress is an inevitable part of life, but we can do things to reduce our stress and improve our health. Relaxation, sleep, socializing, exercise and taking vacations are all thing we can do to manage our stress levels.
- Volunteer – It turns out that helping others makes us happier. Schools, churches, youth sports, food banks and libraries all provide great volunteering opportunities.
- Go back to school – Being a lifelong learner is a key element to living a longer, healthier life. It can be invigorating to learn something new.
- Cut back on alcohol – Even moderate alcohol consumption can interfere with healthy sleep and alcohol is a source of empty calories.
- Get more sleep – We rebuild ourselves as we sleep. Sleeping well improves memory and mental acuity and gives the body a chance to rejuvenate itself.
- Travel – seeing new places, learning new things and taking a break from your routine are great ways to appreciate your life at home and to rediscover your sense of adventure.
Setting work related goals can improve our sense of job satisfaction and improve increase productivity. Gallup did a study on happiness at work and found that there are some resolutions you can make to improve your happiness on the job:
- Make time for yourself every single day – many days consist of doing what other people ask you to do, whether it is at work or at home. It is important to carve a little me time every day so that you have the energy to meet the demands at work and home.
- Do what you do best every day at work. Feeling like you are using your personal skills at work is a key element of job satisfaction.
- Strive to learn something new every day – our work is more interesting if we are learning. Read voraciously, keep yourself up to date on trends and innovations in your field and stay open to new ideas.
- Give yourself a pat on the back. People are happier at work if they get recognized for doing something well, but that doesn’t always happen. It turns out that we can get a boost from giving ourselves a well deserved pat on the back, so don’t be stingy with the praise.
- Make professional contacts and network – this is a great way to meet people, get new ideas and stay up to date on changes in your company and in your field.
Do you like to make resolutions? What’s your goal for 2014? What’s worked for you in the past? Do you have experiences that relate to any of the above suggestions? Post below and get the conversation started!