Brenda’s Journey: Making a Resolution a Month
After being diagnosed with cancer in 2009, Brenda decided it was time to take charge and get healthy. As she exercised and gained a new level of fitness, she realized that she was in charge of her body and started enjoying the activity. After recently having her leg broken, Brenda shares her insights on getting back to healthy.
Raise your hand if you haven’t kept all your New Year resolutions! I know I’m in good company on failing the many resolutions I’ve set in years past. There are a few I’ve kept – doing an exercise event a month was one. Biking 100 miles was another. But for the most part, I start the year with great intentions. I even tried waiting until February one year to set my goals. They quickly dropped by the wayside as other priorities kicked in.
Recently I read an article about setting micro resolutions. You’ve probably heard of micro goals or breaking down a big goal into small tasks. This is different. Instead you look at one area of your life that you want to add to, change or stop. For instance, getting 7-8 hours of sleep a night could be a micro resolution you could set for February. Or the dry January micro resolution many people set after the holidays. The idea is to make one change for one month. If it sticks, then it becomes a habit. And if it doesn’t, hopefully you learned something from your efforts.
I decided to set a couple of themes for my micro resolutions for 2020: health and creativity. Health is obvious. I need to move more and eat better. Not diet. But doing a better job of choosing my meals. And creativity because I find that I’m more energized when I can express myself in creative ways – dance, knitting, art projects. I want to be sure friends and family are included in my micro resolutions too, but I don’t want to add too many layers.
For January, I decided to focus on movement, especially as I’m still working on getting full range of motion with my previously broken leg. For this micro resolution, I’m going to stand at least every 90 minutes during the day, including once I get home in the evening. I may toss in some knee bends or toe raises, but the goal will be to stand for 15 minutes out of every 90 minutes. Purpose: adding in one new healthy habit that will help me build my strength and core.
February had me stumped. It’s not a good time to add in fresh veggies or fruits. But I could be better about drinking water. Especially when I’m cold. So, my micro resolution for February will be to drink at least 3 16-ounce containers of water. It can be hot or cold. And it doesn’t include tea. Purpose: being hydrated is good for my body and keeps me from getting derailed with snacking (see March).
In Seattle, March can be the darkest, rainiest month of the year. And that usually has me reaching for snacks several times a day. With my micro resolution of February, hopefully that added water will help me stave off the boredom snacking. My micro resolution for March will be to stop snacking between meals unless it’s a fruit, vegetable or water. Whew. Purpose: empty calories do nothing for my health or my mind.
That’s the first quarter of 2020. You can read more about micro resolutions in this book by Caroline Arnold. I’ll pop in with my reports from time to time as well as my walking goals. I’d love to hear what your micro resolutions or themes are for the year. What do you want to do differently in 2020?