Experts say that in making resolutions or setting personal goals, it's crucial to have a strong motivation (if I don't lose 50 pounds, I may have to start using insulin to manage my diabetes) and an understanding of the obstacles ahead (to lose 50 pounds, I'm going to have to learn how to cook healthier meals). You need to assess your strengths and resources (I'm a very determined person who enjoys researching nutrition and health issues), identify the support you'll have (I have hundreds of bandster friends who will give me tips and cheer me on), and consider what your risks and mistakes might be (I tend to focus too much energy on unimportant details while completely missing some important ones). Finally, you must decide how you'll evaluate or measure your success (I will weigh myself once a week) and what reward you'll earn when you achieve your goal (I'll buy myself a new winter coat in a smaller size).
My resolution for 2011 is to log my food intake every day. Here's my assessment of that resolution.
1. Motivation - If I don't log my food, I could regain some or all of the weight I've lost.
2. Obstacles - Sometimes it's very hard to find the time to log my food.
3. Strengths & resources - Since I plan a week's worth of dinners once a week, and I plan my daily menus every morning, much of the food logging work is already done. I just have to enter my daily food plan (I use the nutrition/health tracker feature at obesityhelp.com) first thing in the morning and update it at night if I've changed anything during the day.
4. Support - I have an accountability partner who expects to hear my food plan every day and who'll help keep me honest.
5. Risks & mistakes - Finding the time to use my food log will be a challenge, but if I skip a day, I will start over again the next day.
6. Evaluation - the data I enter in the food log itself will indicate whether I've done my logging task each day. No data = no success!
7. Reward - when I've updated my food log every day for a month, I will reward myself with a massage.