Break It Down: Resolving Incrementally.

I am sure you have heard that the majority of people who make big New Year’s resolutions, go back to their old habits within one month.  It’s true.  Most New Year’s resolutions don’t last.

Many of us feel pressure as the year begins to pick something to change.  We often over indulge during the holidays and that adds to the pressure and guilt which leads us to decide on these major changes.

However, major changes can only come in our lives when we are truly ready both mentally and physically.  While we often say that we need to start a diet or pick up an exercise habit, those are usually just comments made in passing.  Changes don’t come about by simply stating you are going to make a difference.  You have to be fully engaged in the process and be at a point where you truly are ready to commit.


This is why many people who try to quit smoking have such a difficult time.  They know they should quit and often feel pressure to quit.  But until they are seriously ready to put down their cigarettes, they will continue to come back to their old habits.

Instead of putting yourself in a position that leads to failure and feelings of guilt or disappointment, set yourself up for resolutions that will create an environment of success.

Small changes add up in big ways and are easier to implement.  Try choosing a monthly habit to take on or give up.  They can be small and simple.   You can add a serving of daily veggies to your diet one month.  Then you can decide to walk for 30 minutes each day the following month.  Or you could opt for drinking more water the next 30 days.

The best part of this plan is that it takes about a month for a new habit to form and stick.  By making small monthly changes, you are creating long term habits that will make you healthier.


Remember, small changes add up in big ways!

What kind of small changes would you like to make?

10 thoughts on “Break It Down: Resolving Incrementally.

  1. I love this idea. This is kind of my plan for 2016. While I want to be healthier, I also picked individual goals for things. Like instead of going to the gym every day, my goal is a pull up by the end of the year! Happy 2016 to you!

  2. Great post Sarah! 🙂

    It is unfortunate that there is this cycle – heading into Thanksgiving people kind of give up – eat too much not just at one meal, but then the whole day and entire weekend, then it becomes ‘cookie & office party’ season so why bother, then the week or so between Christmas eve and New Years …

    … and then suddenly the urgent need to ‘make things right’ after the New Year. This in spite of the new year also bringing busy times at work as everyone settles back in, bills to pay for all the holiday indulgence and so on. How is that supposed to work?

    Change is slow and boring and requires patient determination, not an instant flash of ‘motivation’ that will just as quickly fade …

    So my goal is to have another boring, uneventful year of running, doing some bodyweight exercise (probably not as much as I would like), eating pretty well, and loving my family every second of the way!

  3. this sort of thought process is what helps me remember that all change is affected over time, and it’s good to be reminded of that — that the small things we do on a daily basis are what forms habits, and that we need to remember that these big changes we want don’t come overnight — Rome wasn’t built in a day, so to speak — and we have to work hard and dedicate ourselves to them every day. good post.

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