The Power of Friendship to Stick to Your New Year’s Resolutions

Friends Exercise

Friends Exercise

We’re now approaching the middle of January and by now, statistically speaking, a lot of us have already pushed aside the new year’s resolutions we made for 2020.

Can you relate? Or are you still going strong?

If your resolutions have come to a standstill, or even if you’re still going strong, we want to share something with you today that we heard from one of our patients. This may just help you pick your resolutions back up, and most importantly, make sure you continue enjoying them!

Last week I was enjoying my morning protein smoothing in our clinic when one of our patients, Wendy, was asking me if I had set any goals for the new year. After I told Wendy my plans, I went on to ask about hers, to which she said…

Yes! I’ve set a few but this year I have decided not to do them alone. I’m partnering up and sticking to them with a friend instead, and so far so good! We haven’t skipped a walk or gym visit yet!”

Which got me thinking… Maybe Wendy is onto something here.

After all, it is a well-known fact that if you partner up with a friend who has similar goals to you, you’re a lot less likely to rain check on a 7 a.m. gym class if your close friend has signed up on the mat next to you.

So it makes sense that when it comes to new year’s resolutions or any goals for that matter, you don’t have to go at it alone.

With this in mind, here are some suggestions on how you and your friends can boost your dedication to any goal you set (even if you’ve slipped off track).

Have Honest Check-Ins With Each Other

Involving a friend adds and objective perspective. Someone with an outside view can help you see the ways you might resist change and help you to find other ways to stick to new habits.

For example- while you might not realize it, your friend might be able to pick up on the fact that you tend to skip workouts when you’ve had a long, tiring day at work, or that you feel extra sluggish on a Wednesday.

Having someone to help you stay on track can keep you accountable and make it easier to break free from those habits you want to change.

It’s true that when you have someone to help you stay focused, you gain a reason to follow through as we don’t like to let others down.

Ask A Friend For Help

Let’s face it. There’s something out there that you don’t enjoy doing. Whether it’s cardio, cooking new healthy recipes, walking a tougher route, there’s always something!

Maybe you want to run more but you hate cardio. If that’s the case and you have a friend who runs regularly, asking them to run with you and help you to get started can provide all the encouragement that you need to not give up your new habit so quickly.

Maybe you want to take up yoga but you don’t want to go to a class alone. If you have a friend who already goes, or know of someone who wants to begin yoga too, ask if they’ll come along with you. Sometimes having someone to do activities like yoga or other classes makes it that much more enjoyable and gives you a spot of ‘me during the week to wind down. And you get to catch up with friends too.

Celebrate With A Friend!

Finally, a little bit of positive reinforcement.

Whenever small milestones are met, I see them as an opportunity to reinforce what has been accomplished. Doing so can inspire you to continue on towards the finish line and help you to feel accomplished along the way. And a nice dinner or massage after that long run or hike just feels that much better with your friend by your side.

Sticking to new year’s resolutions don’t have to be tough. And if you’ve let them slip already, don’t go beating yourself up over that either. Every day is a new opportunity to get back on track with them again, and this is just one way to help to stick to them that much easier.

If you have questions or concerns, call or text one of our PTs at 623.486.3333.

Nick Hunter, PT, DPT

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