The new year is almost here, which will inevitably bring up the topic of resolutions for a happy and healthy new year. How will you handle the bombardment of diet and weight loss banter that engulfs the country come January 1? Read below to learn how to use this time of year to strengthen you relationship with food and your body.

Top New Years Resolutions

Inc.com published a list of the top New Years resolutions that people make each year (based on a survey of 2000 people).

The TOP THREE resolutions were:

1. Diet

2. Exercise more

3. Lose weight.

This is hardly surprising when you consider how hard the fitness and diet industry promotes dieting and weight loss at the beginning of each year. It’s a new year and a new start to your healthy life!

The problem with this is that dieting and exercising to manipulate our body is not healthy. In fact, going to the extremes that many people do, these New Years resolutions send us further away from health, not closer.

To prepare yourself for this intense bombardment of pressure you will be exposed to come January, get ready with your own truly health promoting intentions. When you’re coworkers, family, neighbors and talkative mailman tell you how great their new diet or gym lifestyle is, you can be confident that you are taking steps to help yourself have a truly happy and healthy new year.

A New Year, New You

If, in the past, you were the first to make the “lose 10 pounds” resolution or the “exercise 5 days a week” resolution, you surely are not alone. Often these types of goals come from a place of desire for self-care and health, but they are misdirected. It’s no wonder 80% of people fail at the resolutions they set.

If you are just starting your journey out of the diet mindset, you will want to learn more about intuitive eating and how it can help you to strengthen your connection to your body and truly make healthful decisions for yourself. This is the foundation from which individual healthy changes occur. Instead of researching your next diet, try picking up the Intuitive Eating book as your first read of the new year!

Set Intentions Not Resolutions

Intentions are similar to resolutions in that you set them hoping for change. That is where the similarities end. Unlike the all-or-nothing approach resolutions take, intentions help us to ebb and flow to a different state, leaving little room for failure as long as we continue to act on the intention.

How do you feel when you do not succeed at a resolution or (in any other month) a goal that you have set? I know that it can make me feel defeated, and not very excited to continue on towards that same goal. Intentions are more like feelings or overarching themes that align with values you have set in your life.

For example, if taking care of yourself so that you can live a full and happy life is something that you value, then maybe your intention is to respect and honor your body.

The actions that you can take to respect and honor your body could include:

  • Starting a mindful eating practice.
  • Scheduling rest days from exercise.
  • Taking steps to improve body image and more positive self-talk.
  • Seeing a dietitian or a therapist to help you work through barriers that have been difficult for you to overcome on your own.

With the example above, there is no failure. As long as your intention aligns with values that you have established as important and non-negotiable in your life, setting intentions and creating action steps will lead to a happy and healthy new year (and beyond).

Instead of worrying about new year’s resolutions, use the end of this year to really focus in on what is deeply important to you and what intention you can set for the new year that aligns with that value.

Non diet intentions for a happy and healthy new year | Nutrition and Therapy

Tell me below in the comments: What is your New Year Intention??

Did you find value in this article? If so, you may also enjoy How to Eat Intuitively This Holiday Season or Eating Disorders and Intuitive Eating