Victoria E. Robben

Prepare for a fantastic New Year with these tips:

1. Big Picture – What do you want your future to look like?  Set long-term goals regarding what you want to do with your life, health, career, finances, family, etc.  Acknowledge what you really want for yourself.  Think 5, 10, 15 years out.  Dream BIG!

2. Priorities – Establish resolutions that come from the deepest part of you, reflect your own personal core values and are not simply guided by social expectations or what you think you’re supposed to do.  Consider where the motivation is coming from and recalibrate your priorities based on what is really most important to you.  Be true to yourself.

3. Take Inventory – Check in with yourself.  Where are you right now?  In which ways are you on-track regarding your long-term goals?  In which ways are you not? Accept and be proud of where you are.  Use this as a stable starting point.

4. You’ve Got Time – Think about how you would like the coming year to fit into your long-term plans.  What steps do you want to take this year which will help you towards your long-term goals?

5. Quarterly Goals – Translate what you would like for the coming year into 4 pieces, quarters.  These are meant to take you through the next year of your life.  Consider this an opportunity to set your main intentions and priorities for the coming year.

6. Baby Steps – Set smaller and more specific goals on a monthly, weekly or daily basis.  If your New Year’s resolution is to “get healthier,” specific goals might be to:
a. exercise for an hour once per week through the first quarter
b. eat one more vegetable and/or fruit per day
c. eat one less dessert per week

7. Set yourself up for SUCCESS – Set small goals that are positive and supportive in nature.  The resolution should be your guide and friend, like Linus’ blanky.  It should not be something that makes you feel bad about yourself or brings shame and guilt.  Set fun resolutions that make you feel good throughout the year.  Life is a journey.  Enjoy it!

8. Plan for Barriers – Acknowledge distractions and obstacles which may impede your progress, plan for them to come at you, commit to overcoming them.  Prepare for these challenges with strategies and some kind of support system.

9. Test Drive – Try on the resolution before you commit to it.  Once you come up with a potential resolution, say it out loud and sit with it.  See how it sounds and how it makes you feel.  Your resolutions have to be right for you.

10. Positivity and Praise – Be positive about the New Year and about your future!  Give yourself the praise you deserve for every baby step or healthy choice you make.

Victoria E. Robben is a freelance writer and marketing consultant for BreakThrough Physical Therapy.

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