I wanted to write about 2020 this week.  With the last full moon of the decade making its appearance on the fifteenth and the holiday season upon us, the New Year is on my mind.  At first, I told myself it was too early.  The more I thought about it though, the more I realized that this mindset is probably why our lofty, last minute New Year’s Resolutions typically fail.

We always set a goal to lose weight, so let’s use that example.  The intention to adopt healthier habits in the New Year is commendable, but a hope without a plan isn’t a goal.  Starting early may be just what we need to finally achieve our New Year’s Resolutions.

In past years, we would’ve woken up on New Year’s Day, after a month of holiday treats and festivities, feeling unhealthy and overindulged.  We’d start a cold turkey diet and fall off the wagon shortly after because our lack of planning lead to unsustainable behaviors.

To reach our new Year’s Resolutions this year, let’s not set ourselves up for failure.  Starting now, set a realistic goal.  Not too lofty, but not too easy either – a practical goal that can be achieved.

Make your goal quantifiable and easy to be tracked.  Celebrating small victories gives you the fuel to keep working toward your goal.  If you set a goal to lose two pounds each month, you can use this benchmark to acknowledge the progress you’ve made and remind yourself why you should keep going.  How will you lose two pounds each month?  Set a specific daily plan of action that will bring you closer to achieving your goal.

Holding yourself accountable is different than beating yourself up.  The New Year is a great kick-start to achieving your goals, but setbacks happen.  Don’t be too hard on yourself!  It is never too late to start.