It’s never too late to get back to your New Year’s resolution.
The only thing more cliche than a New Year’s resolution is one that you don’t follow much past January. But don’t fret just yet. If you got off track, you’re only about a month into your resolution. Which means that time is on your side for 2015.
Back to smoking?
The Center for Disease Control estimates that about 70% of smokers want to quit. Yet it’s one of the most difficult habits to kick. QuitSmoking.com thinks “that most people just don’t know how to go about quitting.”
Here’s some of their best advice.
1. Believe that you have it in you to quit.
“Believing you can quit is so important because your belief will guide everything you do in your attempt to quit. The way you think, the research you do, the steps you take, the people you talk to, the help you seek—all these will be influenced by the belief you have in your ability to give up cigarettes.”
2. Set a date – and don’t go cold turkey!
“Quitting on a specific date is preferable to slowly reducing the number of cigarettes that you smoke. By going “cold turkey” you won’t have to keep track of how many cigarettes you smoked yesterday and how many you will smoke today. You will also remove the temptation to cheat and smoke too many.”
3. Don’t quit quitting!
“Many smokers who have successfully given up cigarettes have made several attempts to quit before they finally kicked the habit. You should know going in that quitting may be a lengthy, or even life-long, process.”
Off your diet plan?
Food is arguably one of the most difficult habits to quit. You have to have it to live, so you can’t just walk away from it. Plus bad food is so accessible and much easier to prepare than whole foods. That’s why so many people struggle with overeating and weight problems.
But like smoking, you shouldn’t throw in the towel just because you fell off the wagon (so many adages!). And also like smoking, eating right has to be a lifelong commitment. You will always need to eat; doing so properly in the age of convenience food is what’s difficult.
“If you want to improve on something, you need to track your progress, and the behaviors that cause progress,” says Evidence Mag. To improve health or lose weight, it’s vital that you understand your current behaviors. Sure, we hear, “lose weight and eat more vegetables” from every healthy lifestyle source. But shouldn’t you have more success if you understand why you eat, when you eat, and why you eat what you eat?
Tracking your food isn’t the end-all of weight loss, but it’s one of the most effective methods. When you put what you eat in words, you hold yourself accountable. That one bite of chocolate is a secret if no one sees it. When you put it on paper, it becomes real.
Weight Watchers is perhaps the most famous of all tracking programs. It also gives you point values for your food and a limit of the number you can eat each day. My Fitness Pal is another site that works to help you understand and track your food and exercise.
Regardless of your resolution – saving more, learning something new, watching less TV – it’s never too late to hop back to it. It’s also important to remember that you’re not the only person who has faced this. There are support groups for everything, even online ones. It’s so helpful to recognize that you’re going to have setbacks, there are other people who have too, and that the only way you lose is if you quit trying.