The attitude we have towards health and fitness needs a major makeover in 2018. This topic is especially important right now—at the start of the new year—because it’s at this time we see a lot of language telling us to fix things about our bodies.
Gym ads, diet pill ads, and anything trying to sell you a “better body” at the start of the new year can be extremely unrealistic and devastating to anyone’s self-esteem. The common belief is that you need to make your body look a certain way to be “healthy” or “fit.” This isn't true. Many people think they need to make life-changing strides in order to be successful in the new year. And the worst part of it all, is that this unrealistic image of a “healthy body” is wrapped up in companies’ schemes to make money, which is a hard system to deconstruct.
In 2018, it’s time to stop talking about health and fitness using the terms “new you,” “body goals,” “summer body,” etc. You can improve your health by changing small habits and getting some more exercise. There’s no reason anyone should be pressured to lose 50 pounds and look like a totally different person. Goals don’t have to be life-changing. You don’t have to create a “new you” to be healthier in 2018.
I think the reason we give up on new year’s resolutions easily is because we’re too hard on ourselves. It’s close to impossible to become a totally different-looking person in one year in a healthy way. Trying to loose weight fast is incredibly difficult. Instead, make resolutions to develop healthier habits. For example, eat more fruit. Ride your bike to close destinations (weather permitting). Don’t use your phone right before bed.
An author for HuffPost, Brittany Wong, asked therapists what the most common resolutions are and how attainable they actually are. On a scale of 1 to 5, 5 being the hardest, therapists rated losing weight a 3. It’s not that simple. You have to have the time and patience to learn about nutrition and whatnot. And if you’re trying to lose a large amount of weight, that’s a lot of work to do.
According to the article, the easiest goals to achieve are the smallest. And even though they may be small, they can be super effective. One therapist in the article recommends trying small organizational goals. She says, “pick up your clothes from the floor each night before bed.” Honestly, that’s something I can work on. And becoming more organized, even if you start small, is a step in the right direction. The same principle goes for health and fitness.
There are so many things we can do to tackle new year’s resolutions without shaming our own or other people’s bodies. It's time we stop telling people their goal should be to look like a bikini model, and worse, pretending like it's realistic. Starting off with the idea that you need to look better or become a whole new you is a set-up for failure. Remember, the little things add up.