Doing this one thing will increase the success of your 2016 New Year’s resolution

January 1st is always filled with the resolutions of many, most of which include goals of starting fresh and working to achieve a higher level of health. But we all know what happens come February and March. Slowly but surely, the majority of resolutions are abandoned and our old habits kick in. Before we know it, we are at the end of another year, and not much has changed. There is one thing you can do to increase your success next year: START NOW!

The truth is, most of our resolutions are so grand that they easily become unrealistic to implement in one day. A common resolution we hear is, “I want to exercise 6 days per week starting January 1st!” For someone that is not currently exercising at all, there is a large gap between where they are and where they’d like to be, and it becomes challenging to achieve success in that situation. Starting now would improve the opportunity for success because that person could work their way up to exercising 6 days per week by January 1st. They may start at 3 days per week for the first two weeks, 4 days per week for the next two weeks, and 5 days per week for the two weeks after that. When January 1st hits, they are ready to bump their routine up to 6 days per week. But let’s be honest, going from no exercise to 6 days per week is near impossible for the average Joe!

Even if your New Year’s resolution is a baby step towards becoming a healthier you, starting now will increase your chance for success. Most of us have heard that it takes 21 days to form a new habit. The truth is, it may actually take longer for some of us. Starting your resolution now gives you over 40 days to figure out the kinks so you can consistently meet your goal in 2016. New habits are hard to form, and in the first few weeks you may forget to drink that extra water or eat your healthy snack. Those few times of not reaching your goal can be enough to derail your resolution for the rest of the year if you wait until January 1st to begin. So how great would it be to work out the details before your resolution actually starts?

Be sure to consider the logistics of how your resolution will work with your lifestyle. If the average workday allows for 30 minutes of exercise, a goal to exercise for 60 minutes three times per week is unrealistic. There is always a time component to resolutions no matter what the resolution is, so plan accordingly! And if you are into resolutions, choose one that will change your life. The greater the impact this successful resolution will make on your life, the more likely you will be to follow through! So what are you waiting for? Let’s make 2016 the best year yet by starting those healthy habits now!