Don’t be a New Year’s Resolutionary

Don’t be a New Year’s Resolutionary

The new year is upon us. We get a chance every 365 days to make a few resolutions and get a fresh start. Being a trainer and wellness consultant I’ve had the opportunity to witness this phenomenon first hand for 34 years. My established clients and I used to dread the first two weeks of January. We knew that the gym would be full of new or newly returned members, wandering aimlessly hoping to happen upon a machine or a treadmill to jump on. Every year the crowds would soon dissipate and within 2 weeks everything would start getting back to normal. Many years ago I named these yearly fitness facility marauders “New Year’s Resolutionaries”. How do you not become a New Year’s Resolutionary?

Making resolutions and not sticking to them isn’t just confined to fitness. Any lifestyle or health related behavior that needs changing qualifies. Behavior is the key word. It’s behavior that must change for you to reach your goals. A discussion with the Epidemiologist assigned to my program when I was the Vermont State Employee Wellness Program Manager provided the best insight I’ve heard as to why most attempts at behavior change fail. I was designing a state wide smoking cessation program and I asked Dr. Len Paulozzi which programs were most effective in changing smoking behaviors and quitting. His answer was both surprising and telling. He stated that “it makes little difference what the content of the program is.” What matters most, he said, is whether the person is ready to quit. That theory is as relevant to diet, fitness, or anything else requiring behavior change as it is to smoking cessation. Bottom line, do you have the desire and are you ready to change right now? In my book, I refer to this situation as “being sick and tired of being sick and tired.” You have had enough!

Dr. Paulozzi told me 26 years ago, when you are READY you WILL make a change. The question is, are you in a place to totally commit to making the change that you have been dreaming of. It’s in all of you! I have seen it happen hundreds of times. Motivated people beat the odds to succeed where others don’t.

There are all kinds of tips and suggestions floating around out there giving New Year’s resolution advice. I admit that knowledge, skills, and record keeping are important to success. I have linked two products to help you with that. Download a free electronic version of my book “Healthy Dynamic Living: Utilizing Lifestyle Lessons from Your Ancestors to Promote Healthy Aging and Ultimate Wellness.” from my shared Dropbox file. I have also provided an amazon link to my published record keeping tool, “Tracking Your Success Journal.”

I still maintain that the biggest factor separating successful resolution attempts from those who saw limited results was desire. Without a “fire in your belly” you may simply go through the motions for a week or two then complain for the next 50 weeks. End the yearly ritual, don’t be a resolutionary.

If you are having trouble getting motivated or need some skills to make that change happen contact me for some coaching. I can be reached at

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