Resources for your New Year’s resolutions

Happy New Year On Ice / Photo Credit: luigi diamanti via FreeDigitalPhotos.net
Photo Credit: luigi diamanti via FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Every year, people make New Year’s resolutions. The most popular ones are often gathered up and reported in lists, which is no surprise. However, this list of popular New Year’s resolutions from the US government surprised me because they also included links to resources related to each resolution.

For example, the resolution “Eat healthy food” is linked to the Choose My Plate website, which has food trackers, meal planning features, recipes, and tips on portion sizes, healthy eating, and exercise.

The list includes more than just health-related resolutions. “Volunteer to help others” is linked to the Serve.gov website by the Corporation for National and Community Service, which has a search tool to find volunteer opportunities, service project toolkits, tips for sharing information about your service project, and the ability to register projects on the site to recruit other people to help.

Click here to see the full list of popular New Year’s resolutions, complete with resources to help you make this year a great one.

If you need help coming up with a resolution of your own, click here to read about the SMART technique that could make you successful in keeping this year’s resolutions.

For more wellness posts, subscribe to get each post by email.

How SMART are your resolutions?

Happy New Year!
Photo Credit: digitalart (FreeDigitalPhotos.net)

What kind of New Year’s Resolutions did you make? Was it something vague, like “Eat better,” or does it pass the SMART test?

When setting goals (resolutions included), many people use a technique I learned in school: make them SMART (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Timely).

Specific

Put details in your goal so that you have a clearer idea of what you are planning on doing.

Measurable

Phrase the goal in a way that you can easily tell if you’ve accomplished it or not.

Attainable

Make a goal that you have the ability and resources to meet (or, make sure you have a plan to get the skills and resources you will need).

Realistic

Write your goal so that you do not have to be a miracle-worker to achieve it.

Timely

Include a deadline or time frame in your goal so that you know when to evaluate your progress.

Here are some generic examples with a few of the many possible changes to making SMART goals.

Generic or otherwise non-SMART SMART examples
  • Eat better
  • Eat at least five servings of fruits and vegetables every day
  • Drink more water
  • Drink at least 8 glasses of water every day
  • Drink a glass of water before each meal or snack
  • Substitute a glass of water in the place of one soda every day
  • Work out
  • Do at least 150 minutes of moderate physical activity per week
  • Attend an exercise class three times a week, after work
  • Be a better person
  • Volunteer for one hour on Tuesdays at the local food bank
  • Compliment a stranger every day
  • Lose weight
  • Lose 25 pounds, at a rate of 1 pound each week, through portion control and exercise
  • Meet with the dietitian monthly to discuss and plan realistic weight loss goals and progress
  • Get a better job
  • Apply to 3 jobs per week, until a new job contract is signed
  • Save money
  • Save $100 per month for the 2014 European summer vacation
  • Spend more time with family and friends
  • Host a monthly movie party for close friends
  • Eat Sunday family dinner each week

What are your resolutions? Do they pass the SMART test?

For more wellness posts, subscribe to get each post by email.