Krav Maga Blog: The New Year Is Arbitrary. Your Health And Safety Are Not.
The idea of a New Year is arbitrary. In Europe, it used to be at the end of March, but during the 1500s, an entire set of cultures shifted its New Year from spring, when the snow started to melt, to December, in the dead of winter.
If twenty million people in Europe can just change the calendar on a whim, your New Year’s resolutions don’t stand a chance. Big resolutions usually fail.
If you want to make changes, stop making abstract promises such as “I’ll exercise more” or “I’ll eat better.” Get specific, be reasonable, and make your goals shorter term. Below are some examples.
- Don’t “go on a diet” — decide to cut out a specific food or food type. Stop eating pasta, or give up soda. Commit to it for one, two, or three months. An incremental change will feel easier and be more likely to stick.
- Don’t just “join a gym” — pick an active hobby, something that provides direction and purpose. Play a sport. Take up a self defense program that helps you track your advancement. If you want a workout, take group fitness classes that provide instruction, direction, and community.
- Don’t “start on Monday” — Monday is as arbitrary as New Year’s. Monday doesn’t matter. Now matters. Whatever your resolution, start it right now. Don’t finish that cigarette, put it out. Don’t finish that soda, pour it down the drain. You will not be more prepared on Monday than you are now, and you will not be happier after the pie you are currently eating. So whatever your decision is, start it right now.
I am obviously biased, but I believe that this successful strategy is one of the reasons that adult self defense systems like Krav Maga have become so popular. The training regimen will get you in shape and the exercise is purposeful. You learn to be safer while getting in shape. In addition, martial arts programs offer built-in goal setting by offering ranks such as belts or levels.
Whether you choose self defense training or some other activity, pick a small goal with a short term, and start now. Good luck!