Be positive in the New Year

Posted on: 16 December 2013 by Lynda Shaw

Dr Lynda Shaw says make a detailed plan if you want your New Year health plans to succeed.

quit smoking

The New Year always brings with it a host of promises we make to ourselves and our friends and family. We vow to lose weight, take up something new, go cold turkey and stop our bad habits - all in an attempt to better ourselves at the beginning of the year because it signifies a new start.. However, January is arguably the worst time to try and make such changes.

I am not trying to bring gloom and doom but it’s fair to say the weather tends to worsen (with no Christmas to look forward to making it better), our bank accounts are depleted due to all the fun we had saying goodbye to the previous year, and we tend to feel a bit low which is why so many people fall off the wagon so quickly.

You can do very simple things to deter negative feelings in favour of positives ones. If you are planning on making a big change to your life such as quitting smoking, or losing weight you need to create a detailed plan. When immediate results aren’t achieved or you don’t feel as though you have much support it can be so easy to give up, especially when you begin to compare yourself to others. Instead, outline a clear schedule for yourself, with benchmarks of progress and suitable rewards. By doing this, you will always feel as though are moving towards your goal, and not viewing it as an uphill struggle.

Take control and responsibility of yourself and your life. This may seem obvious, but too often people feel as though the world is against them, and it’s all too hard so you might as well give up. That’s not true! You have the ability to take control of all aspects of your life, personal, work, financial, emotional and mental. Remember that if you want a change in your life, it must come from you. That is not to say you should do it alone, part of helping yourself is asking for support. You must not be afraid to reach out to people, it may be uncomfortable for you to begin with, but you will most definitely benefit in the long run.

When you do feel as though things are not going to way you would like them to, counteract every negative thought, with something good, and say it out loud, or write it down. It may seem like a menial or meaningless task, but you’d be surprised at the way verbalising positive thoughts can really change your mood.

Surrounding yourself with positive people is also so important. If you’re feeling down, the last thing you should do is compare how bad things are going with a friend who is feeling equally or even more negative. If you feel as though you don’t have someone to speak to who can reinforce a positive influence in your life, there are plenty of online forums and organisations available to help you.

Staying positive isn’t as simple as smiling when you don’t feel like it, it is changing your mind set to view things in a different perspective. Although, it may be difficult as first, you will find you will have a much better year ahead of you by refocusing your thoughts in a more positive way. Also plan lots of things to look forward to.

2014 could well just be a fantastic year!

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