Slow But Steady Wins the Race

February has arrived, and we are one month into our new year’s resolution journey. Let’s face it, it can be difficult to keep the motivation we once had. While I had the best intentions to get up every morning and go for a walk, some days I didn’t feel like changing out of my pajamas, and that is okay.

The momentum that developed in January suddenly started slowing down as the month passed. While I started my new year’s resolution in full force, I have noticed my motivation fluctuating as of late. Surely, I’m not alone. Many of us have experienced our motivation decline as the year goes by. It’s not uncommon to lose track of our original goal and slowly fall back into old habits. What can we do when this happens? And how can we retain that excitement and focus we once had?

Changing our behavior is a process, and old habits aren’t so easy to change. These habits probably developed slowly over time, and lasting change will require consistency and patience. I’ll share some of the useful tricks that have worked for me:

  • Find support: Join a support group, connect with a friend who has similar goals, or watch motivational videos or social media. Learning about other people’s journeys and motivations may boost your own. Find what inspires you and keep in contact with those who encourage you. Words of encouragement may go a long way when your motivation is dwindling.
  • Acknowledge the small victories: Don’t minimize the small strides. Celebrate the small changes you have noticed and know that you are one step closer to your goal, as far away as it may seem right now.
  • Plan for setbacks: Be prepared for minor setbacks and plan accordingly. It’s easy to get discouraged when you have an off day; just remember that setbacks are temporary. Taking a break can help you reset. Don’t quit!
  • Make your journey as fun as possible: Change can be uncomfortable, so it’s useful to incorporate some fun. Get creative! Join a friendly challenge that may activate your competitive side or create your own rewards system.

Everyone is unique, and what has worked for me may not work for everyone else. Your journey is unique to you. Remember when I couldn’t find the motivation to get out of bed for my morning walk? Well, my best friend and my dog have been my catalysts for change. I realized that I don’t have to walk a marathon to feel accomplished and getting out of bed and going to the park for a few minutes is a small victory. Having my best friend join me and seeing how happy my dog is on that morning walk is certainly an incentive when all I wanted to do was roll over in bed and sleep in. Pushing yourself out of your comfort zone is already an accomplishment.

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