We’re soon approaching the end of January, and by now a lot of us have already pushed aside the new year’s resolutions we made for 2018.
Can you relate? Or are you still going strong?
If your resolutions have come to a standstill, or even if you’re still going strong – I wanted to share something with you today that I heard from one of our patients that may just help you pick your resolutions back up, and most importantly – make sure you keep enjoying them!
Last week I was enjoying a coffee in our Hartlepool clinic and one of our patients, Julie, was asking me if I’d set any goals for the new year. After I told Julie my plans I went on to ask about hers, to which she said…
“Yes! I’ve set a few but this year I’ve decided not to do them alone, I’m partnering up and sticking to them with a friend instead, and so far so good! We haven’t skipped a walk or gym visit yet!”
Which got me thinking – maybe Julie’s onto something here.
After all, it’s a well-known fact that if you partner up with a friend who has similar goals to you, you’re a lot less likely to rain check on a 7 a.m. stretch class if your closest friend has signed up on the mat next to you.
So it makes sense that when it comes to New Year’s Resolutions – or any goals for that matter – you don’t have to go it alone.
With that in mind, here are some suggestions on how you and your friends can boost your dedication to any goal you set (even if you’ve slipped off track). Firstly…
Have Honest Check-ins With Each Other
Involving a friend adds an objective perspective. Someone with an outside view can help you see the ways you might resist change and help you find other ways to stick to new habits.
For example – while you might not realise it, your friend might be able to pick up on the fact that you tend to skip workouts when you’ve had a long, tiring day at work, or that you feel extra sluggish on a Wednesday.
Having someone to help you stay on track can keep you accountable and make it feel easier to break free from those habits you want to change.
It’s true that when you have someone to help you keep focused, you gain a reason to follow through as we don’t like to let others down.
Ask A Friend For Help
Let’s face it, there’s something out there that you don’t enjoy doing – whether it’s cardio, cooking new healthy recipes, walking a tougher route, there’s always something!
Maybe you want to run more but you hate cardio – if that’s the case and you have a friend who runs regularly, asking them to run with you and help you get started can provide all the encouragement you need to not give up your new habit so quickly.
Maybe you want to take up Yoga but you don’t want to go to a class alone – if you have a friend who already goes, or know someone who wants to begin Yoga too, ask if they’ll come along with you. Sometimes having someone to do activities like Yoga and other classes with, makes it that much more enjoyable and gives you a spot of ‘me time’ in the week to wind-down. And you get to catch up with friends too.
Celebrate With A Friend!
Finally, a little bit of positive reinforcement.
Whenever small milestones are met, I see them as an opportunity to reinforce what has been accomplished. Doing so can inspire you to continue on toward the finish line and help you feel accomplished along the way. And a little bit of bubbly or a massage after that long run or hike just feels that much better with your friend by your side.
Sticking to new year’s resolutions don’t have to be tough. And if you’ve let them slip already, don’t go beating yourself up over that either – every day is a new opportunity to get back on track with them again, and this is just one way to help make sticking to them that bit easier.
P.S. If you’re experiencing back pain which is stopping you from sticking to your new year’s resolutions – click here to download my free back pain tips guide which includes actionable tips that I give to my patients at the Paul Gough Physio Rooms. Click here to get your free copy: www.paulgoughphysio.com/back-pain
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You might know Paul as an expert Columnist who writes weekly health articles for TWO of the North East's biggest daily Newspapers, The Northern Echo And The Hartlepool Mail, he is a regular Speaker at Industry Seminars around the globe and a Radio Personality, often heard on the BBC. Paul has been an expert guest on dozens of Radio shows and regularly interviewed in newspapers, magazines and trade journals all over the world, including the Guardian.
Paul’s background included working extensively in the Premier League with a Top Professional Football Team, and since quitting his job in Professional Football in 2007, his Physio Practice has become the fastest growing in the UK and biggest in the North East. So successful, that companies like BUPA, ASDA, The Vela Group And Coast & Country, repeatedly retain his Physio company's services to keep healthy their own staff and workforce. Paul Gough Physio Rooms is now a large multi-physio, multi clinic speciality practice in Darlington, Durham, Guisborough and Hartlepool.
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