Today is much more than just a day to set resolutions, but more about that later.
My last day with family here was both filled with outdoor fun and cozy time watching movies. First, out for a hike up Pikes Peak. Well maybe not Pikes Peak but the uphill grade, the single digit temps and walking on snow and ice – it might has well have been. I stayed 15 feet ahead of the kids because I wanted to show them I was not old; and I wanted to be out of the line of fire of snowballs.
Although I heard words of a disarmament treaty, Amber was seen stockpiling weapons.
Gus was happy to take the lead on the trail.
After some relaxing, we went out for an early New Year’s Eve dinner because they were leaving for home on New Year’s Eve. I had some yummy chicken pasta and Patient Husband had the salmon. Mmmm.
Now lets talk a little about the last day of 2015. We all need to look back before we look forward. This time last year did you set goals or dreams – also known as resolutions? Did you accomplish any of them? Did you accomplish something that you didn’t even think about? I know I did. I had never run a competitive race, but in 2015 I completed 3 half marathons. So take time to really appreciate your hard work and time in those things. Feel good about it.
Are there things that you didn’t finish? Don’t be too hard on yourself but think of those things and look at them honestly. Could you have done them with a little more concentration or motivation or did something out of your control keep you from that goal? If you didn’t meet the ultimate dream you had, did you still overcome smaller challenges along the way?
So how do we set up ourselves for goals we can meet? There is no sense is setting the bar low – what sense of accomplishment will that be? Have you set the same goals year after year and never meet them? Well then lets look at how you drive yourself forward and up. First, set a goal that is a true challenge but not outrageous; i.e. I want to enter and complete a marathon not I want to enter my first marathon and complete it under 3 hours. Its ok to have several levels of attempts. (I want to increase my speed, I want to add cross-training into my week, etc). Although I am using running as my examples here, it will work for whatever improvements you want to make. If your objective is to lose 25 pounds, your smaller accomplishments can be to have 2 meatless days a week for 3 months, etc.
Keeping a journal really makes reaching your target simpler. To be able to look at what you have done, the act of noting each day makes you more conscious of what you are doing, or not doing, to move yourself closer and closer to that finish line. Another very important part of reaching your goal is to evaluate yourself ever 3-4 months. What have you done so far? What do you need to improve? This way its much easier to reach those steps along the way instead of giving up.
2015 was an emotional roller coaster for me. It was filled with lots of adventures, lots of fun, as well as deep sorrow and sadness. But overall, I feel good about what I did. The best way I pushed myself or motivated myself was to do this: If you can’t seem to get yourself out the door for a morning run, say to yourself “this is my decision. I am deciding to go out and make myself stronger”. OR “Food can be bad for my health or make me strong and healthy. It is my decision and only mine on what I eat today.” No room for weakness or blame. Just make your own strong decisions.
So set aside a moment tonight or tomorrow and think of what you’ve done, what you wish you had completed and then plan for 2016.
I hope we can share 2016 and have fun along the way.