NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH)– We’ve got your back with how to stay on track with those New Year’s resolutions, which for some are a distant memory. Whether it was to lose weight, save money, or spend time with family, News 8 spoke with a psychologist about how to stick to your resolutions.
We spoke with a fitness expert who says 90 percent of folks give up in the first week and a psychologist we spoke with says that’s because your made a goal too far reaching. So she says a goal is successful only if it’s specific and difficult but not too difficult. That’s when folks get discouraged.
Let me explain. For instance if weight loss is what you want, don’t tell yourself you want to lose 20 pounds. Make your goal to lose one pound a week. Or instead of trying to save thousands of dollars, just force yourself to put away $20 or $50 a paycheck. Then with each pound lost or each $50 saved, reward yourself in a small way. She says she even does this at work.
“When I’m grading papers for example, it’s a boring task. It has to be done, right? Students want grades. They want feedback if it’s particularly difficult I’ll say I’m going to grade these next 5 and then I’m going to go take a walk around the block or get a piece of chocolate. That’s operant conditioning in action,” said Carrie Bulger, Prof. of Psychology, Quinnipiac University.
She says sometimes you have to be really honest with yourself about what is getting in the way. Then try and chip at it slowly. Overtime you’ll reach your goal.