That's right! 2017 is almost over. Can you believe it? With the new year just around the corner, it's time to take stock of the highs and lows of this past year. What did you accomplish, what could have gone better, and what direction you want to take in your life this year? Of course, we all know the yearly tradition of making a promise to ourselves and our friends to improve places known as New Year's resolutions.
There are plenty of noble resolutions people make to help with goal setting, like promising to read more or to drink less or to talk to your family. However, there are a few resolutions that are popular but unhealthy for your body image and your well-being. The one that I have in mind specifically is weight loss.
I agree that it is important to take care of your body through diet and exercise. The truth is, setting a New Year's resolution isn't the best way to go about it. One issue is motivation. While it's easy to ride the wave that is “New Year, New Me” this wave of inspiration tends to be short-lived.
The main issue here is that the goal of weight loss is not as well thought out. You might have a goal weight in mind, but how are you getting there and stay consistent? What usually happens is the person lasts maybe a month at maximum before their drive fizzles out. This comes from not making monthly goals and weekly goals. A lot can happen in a year and it's important to stay on track. Otherwise, you'll feel intimidated when you enter a packed gym of people with the same dream.
Another issue is that a lot of people who make the weight loss goal end up creating even more unhealthy situations for themselves, like nutrition deficiency or muscle strain, or even injuries due to overexertion.
Not enough research is done before taking on a weight loss challenge. So many people quit early because they didn't take the time to learn what's safest for their bodies. Throwing up after an exercise at the gym is not dedication. It's dangerous. Listen to your body and make sure your goals are realistic. If it's too tough, its ok to adjust your goal.
Finally, a weight loss resolution can actually harm your self-esteem. I completely agree that it is important to lose weight if you are overweight or obese because it can cause life-threatening conditions. However, it's also important that you are losing weight for the right reasons. Many times people will lose weight because they hate how their body looks. This will lead to severe negative body image which will impact mental health negatively.
A person could develop depression, worsen depression, or develop eating disorders if they aren't careful.
Make sure you are going into this with a positive mindset. Perhaps make a goal to practice self-love, or go into it with the mindset that eating well and exercising is a form of self-care rather than a goal to look better.
If you are unable to meet these criteria, I wouldn't suggest making weight loss a goal for your resolution, but perhaps understand that it can be a goal anytime of the year as long as you really plan for long-term success and are responsible. It's important for your mental health and physical safety.