It may be hard to believe but here we are at the end of 2020. It’s almost 2021 but most of us are still processing the beginning of this year. The New Year’s Eve celebrations were joyous but no one predicted that this year would have gone the way it has.
You probably made some New Year resolutions at the beginning of this year. Were you able to stick to any of them? It’s okay if you didn’t; this year took a turn that none of us could have imagined.
Now is a great time to start thinking about New Year resolutions for this upcoming year. Maybe start by visiting the resolutions you set last year and reflect on your accomplishments. There’s no reason to get down on yourself if you weren’t able to stick with the things you initially set out to accomplish. All you can do is move forward!
The New Year is the perfect time to resolve to improve. It’s a new beginning. A fresh start. So, are you going to work on getting around to that exercise regimen you swore you’d adopt this year? What about setting a goal for reading all those books you bought at the start of quarantine that you never got around to reading?
Or is this the year you take an honest look at a substance abuse problem you’ve been avoiding? Is this the year you resolve to make things better for yourself and those in your life – family, friends, co-workers, other drivers – when you resolve to change unhealthy, self-destructive behavior?
If you finally resolve to improve your life, those who love you will all be better off. If you haven’t made your New Year resolutions yet, what are you waiting for? The following 7 tips will help you make and keep your resolutions this upcoming year!
NEW YEAR RESOLUTIONS
You know what needs to be fixed. You know the impact a substance abuse problem has on loved ones – your spouse, the kids, the people who are closest to you. Even if you’re reading this on the hottest day of summer, today is the day you resolve to make things better by controlling self-destructive behavior.
1. DON’T BITE OFF MORE THAN YOU CAN CHEW
You resolve to quit drinking, lose 30 pounds, run 20 miles a week, and eat more vegetables. All at once.
Handle one resolution at a time. Prioritize your resolutions, tackling the most difficult first – the one negatively impacting everything from work performance to personal life fun. The more you take on at a time, the less likely you are to stick with any of it.
You aren’t super-human. One bad habit at a time. Once you’ve addressed bad habit #1, move on to #2. Self-improvement and substance abuse recovery aren’t final objectives. It’s an on-going process that’ll be on-going for the rest of your happier, healthier life.
2. DON’T MAKE RESOLUTIONS THAT START AND END
“I resolve to lose 10 pounds in the coming year.” Okay, that sounds like a good resolution, right? The problem is, once you lose those 10 pounds, you go back to the unhealthy habits that got you in trouble in the first place.
Diets start. Diets end.
You’re better off resolving to change unhealthy behaviors. Instead of resolving to lose 10 pounds, resolve to eat less junk food and more healthy snacks. Gradually change your behavior over time, eliminating one junk food, then the next, and so on.
Resolve to be a better person and don’t put a number on it, regardless of what the resolution is. “I resolve to stop smoking except for one cigarette with morning coffee.”
Want to bet you’re back to smoking a pack a day within a week? You know your strengths and you know your limitations. So make the decision to set strong resolutions and then fully commit to them.
3. DON’T SET YOURSELF UP TO FAIL
If you try to improve too much too quickly, you’ve created the perfect storm to fail at your resolutions. If you do fail for a day, don’t quit. Get back in there the next day and start with even greater resolve. If you can summon the self-discipline, get help.
If you can’t stick to your New Year resolutions, (1) don’t be hard on yourself, (2) try, try again, and/or (3) find support for your resolutions at a recovery facility that designs a customized therapy to bring change to your life today, and into a brighter future for you and
the other important people in your life.
Failure is a part of the process but don’t set yourself up for failure. Set small, reasonable goals you can achieve and then move the mark back. If you fail too often too soon, you’ll lose hope and feel more inclined to give up.
4. CHANGE YOUR ROUTINE
Changing your routine is a great idea if you’re feeling like you’re stuck in a cycle on repeat. This is especially true for people trying to quit using drugs and alcohol. If your routine doesn’t change, if you keep seeing the same people with the same addictions you have, things won’t get better quickly – and you’re making it so much harder on yourself.
5. CHANGE YOUR ENVIRONMENT
Trying to quit using drugs and alcohol but finding it hard while living in the same place you’ve always lived? If possible, check yourself into an addiction recovery facility. The change of environment gets you away from people who tempt you. At the same time, it also places you in a facility that will help you discover the tools and strategies you need to change unhealthy behaviors for the benefit of everyone.
If you stay in your current substance abuse rut, it’s going to be that much more difficult to get out so change venues, check in to a facility for support, and make this New Year resolution one that makes your life better – forever! Changing your environment is one of the best things you can do to keep your New Year Resolution and ensure your sobriety!
6. CREATE A WRITTEN PLAN WITH MILESTONES
If you carry a vague idea of what you want to change, it’s easy to forget about it. Write down your first resolution of the New Year. Put it where you see it every day. Get the support you need to keep your resolution, before moving on to the next challenge and the next.
By putting your resolution in writing, and by creating a workable strategy to stick to your program of self-improvement, you stand a better chance of actually reaching that goal and changing your life for the better – forever. You can also look back on your written plan this time next year to reflect on all the progress you made!
7. MAKE THE CHANGE THAT SCARES YOU
Sometimes the scariest changes are the ones we need most. Have you been putting off asking for help with your substance abuse? There are resources available. Maybe this is the year you finally reach out for assistance.
Start by contacting Hawaii Island Recovery on the Big Island of Hawaii to talk to our substance abuse experts. Let us help you design a strategy that plays to your personal strengths and doesn’t rely on personal shortcomings.
Using a combination of traditional therapies, and the latest in alternative therapies, our professional counselors design the best program to suit your personality, your beliefs and values, your objectives, and the challenge of facing an addiction.
Happy New Year from your friends at Hawaii Island Recovery, where you learn to keep those New Year resolutions for a healthier happier life.
Let us help you make that change. It’s going to be a great year. Call us at (877) 721-3556 to speak with an admissions counselor today!