If you’re like me (‘heaven forbid”, I think I heard a few people cry out), then you often have trouble sticking to hard schedules especially ones that involve resolutions, and particularly, of course, resolutions about improving your health.
I mean, I cannot begin to count the many times I’ve vowed to eat less of some of the things I eat too much of such as salami and pickles and a list of others too long to mention in a brief blog post.
I invariably resolve to eat less of these foods just after I pigged out on them late on December 31 – I celebrate the new year by eating stuff I know I shouldn’t eat – and I can usually manage to stick to my resolve until the next time I see these items again when I re-open the fridge early on January 1.
OK, so that’s a slight exaggeration – some years I manage to hold out till January 2 – but you know what I mean: lifestyle resolutions are exceedingly hard to stick to.
For example, some studies have estimated that the average smoker makes 8 or so attempts to quit before he’s finally able to succeed at not smoking.
And the reason they call it yo-yo dieting is that the vast majority of people who want to lose weight go on and off diets regularly because diets are so very hard to stick to.
So my advice at this late point in January is this: if you resolved to do something on that artificial deadline of January 1 and like the vast majority of us, you did not succeed to hold out this long, please don’t be hard on yourself: that’s just how tough lifestyle change can be.
And even more important, don’t take any failure to be a signal to give up: remember those average smokers I mentioned earlier – even though they fail most times they try to quit, a great proportion of them, perhaps as many as half, do eventually succeed.
Bottom line: it’s never too late to make a positive health change even if you’re well into your senior years.
And there’s no reason not to pick another totally artificial deadline date – say February 1, or February 3, or whatever – to try to make that change.
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