2018 is winding down. At the NAA, we’re already thinking about our resolutions. We’re committed to highlighting our affiliates so you can find the services you need, giving more support to caregivers, and bringing you the latest in aphasia research. We also have books chosen for our online book club, and we can’t wait to share them with you in the new year.
You may be setting some resolutions, too, with the intention of keeping these new actions or mindsets going throughout the year. Here are our tips for sticking to your resolutions beyond the second week of January.
Of course, you want to see big changes, but it’s better to start small and make continual progress. It helps to be realistic. Set an achievable goal as well as a date on the calendar when you’re going to reassess and make sure that the goal is realistic. Let’s say you set your goal to do an hour of speech therapy exercises per day and find after two weeks that you’ve only managed to reach that goal three times per week. Simply reset the goal, or make the amount of daily time shorter. By being flexible, you’re more likely to find a sustainable process.
You’re more likely to stick to your goals if you can clearly define your goals. So be specific. Think about what you’d like to achieve and what it will take to get there. Is it a realistic goal with measurable success? Have you taken a large goal and divided it into smaller parts? Be specific so you can definitively say whether you’ve reached your goal or not.
Remember back in school when your teacher gave you a sticker for doing your work? Give yourself a little reward for staying on track. You can either track your progress and give yourself a bigger reward at the end of the week, or give yourself small rewards every time you stick to your plan. Think of sticking to your resolution as your job and the incentive as your payment.
You’re more likely to stick to your resolution if other people are involved in your progress. Not only does it hold you accountable, but you’re more likely to stick to an activity if you have company. Support groups are wonderful spaces for finding other people to support you in achieving your goals and give you the space to support someone else in turn.
What are your resolutions this year?
Image: Annie Spratt via Unsplash