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Behavioral health specialist gives tips on sticking to New Year’s resolutions

Behavioral health specialist gives tips on sticking to New Year’s resolutions

LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) – New Year’s resolutions can often times be more of a mental battle than a physical one.

Before you set any resolutions this year, Behavioral Health Specialist Dr. Jonathan Martin wants to equip you with tools to accomplish those goals and the tips you need in case you do not.

Before you set your sights on losing weight or quitting smoking in 2024, Dr. Martin said breaking up those goals in small increments increases your likelihood of maintaining them.

“Set reasonable goals. Month to month, or week to week, that’s sort of a low bar,” he said. “That way if you’re having a rough week or a rough time and you can’t quite accomplish what you hope to, if you can get that minimum threshold that you’ve set, then we’re not beating ourselves up on the back end and we’re also feeling decent that we’re still working towards a goal.”

Dr. Martin said partnering with friends or family to complete a resolution can be beneficial.

“If we feel like someone’s on this adventure with us, we tend to be more excited about it. Its easier to take that step every morning, but if that becomes negative, that could be detrimental,” he said. “Its important that everyone is just hyping each other up and is focusing on the good parts.”

Not following through with your goals does not mean that you have failed.

“People tend to think of it as, ‘I made a mistake by setting this goal,’ but I like to twist that thought process and see it as, ‘well I’ve tried some things out. I know what works and what doesn’t, so I need to refresh my goal or refresh my resolution to something that’s more fitting with the information I have now,’” he said.

Dr. Martin added that comparison is the thief of joy.

When you compare your goals and completion rate to the resolutions of others, you can become more discouraged than inspired.

Regardless of what your resolutions are, Martin said setting goals can help you look forward to a better and brighter year ahead.