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Weight Loss New Year’s Resolution Plan, Day 2: You’re Makin’ a List and Checkin’ It Twice

You want to lose some weight. Fine. But why? Because you want to wear that blue dress again? Because you want to take steps to reverse your diabetes l? Because you’d like to be able to take hikes with your friends?

Write down every reason you want to lose weight. You can look back on your words and add to them, reframe them – and, most of all, act on them. Your list will remind you why you’re making changes and will help re-motivate you when the challenges of changing your life seem too daunting.

Make sure the items on your list are positive, specific, and actionable. Yes, “I want to be thinner” may be a reason for losing weight, but it’s not specific enough to be helpful. You want a list that helps you envision, and then act upon, potential of a different future that you can create for yourself. For example, “I want to be able to walk a mile with my friends” is both more precise and motivating than “I want to get more exercise.”

Your list should also be positive. Avoid writing things like, “I want to stop hating my body.” I urge you to leave your self-critical, negative voice behind. Let’s be real: how has beating yourself up worked out for you so far?