The best way to tackle your New Year's resolutions isn't always to dive in full force. Racking up a few small successes before you tackle the big ones is the surprising trick that can make your New Year's resolutions last (or, okay, it's the one that can actually get you started on them in the first place). But how do you tally up those small successes? Simply do one of these easy moves every day this week.
New Year's Resolution Day #1: Don't Do Something!
Today, ignore your inner overachiever and don't take that big step toward your goal – like burning 300 extra calories at the gym. Instead, just don't do one thing that sabotages you. For example, don't grab a giant cookie from the tray at work just because they're free. When you aim too high and go for the crazy big goal, you're more likely to get frustrated and give up. Keep it simple today and get your success tally started.
New Year's Resolution Day #2: Schedule a Checkup
You know your gym will be twice as busy this month, but that's not the case for your doctor's office. Take a few minutes to target your overall health before you target your abs today. Pick up the phone—or log on to ZocDoc.com—and schedule everything from your yearly physical and gyno appointment to your teeth cleaning.
New Year's Resolution Day #3: Find Out How Fit You Really Are
It's impossible to know how to improve your fitness level if you don't know where you stand in the first place. Find out with an online fitness assessment (this one can tell you where your workout currently stands and how to ramp it up.) Or schedule a fitness evaluation at a local gym. They're usually free and don't require membership (but they'll probably try to get you to sign up, of course!).
New Year's Resolution Day #4: De-Clutter Your Closet and Your Life
Cleaning out your closet is similar to a pre-planned, intense workout: It sounds like a great idea ahead of time, you question your sanity during the process, and an overwhelming sense of accomplishment makes it worth it in the end. Today, start small. Get rid of at least 3 items of clothing that don't fit, including undergarments and workout clothes. Only keep what fits your body as it is now. If you lose weight in 2011, reward yourself with something new. On a roll? Use this step-by-step plan to clear out more clutter with minimum anxiety.
New Year's Resolution Day #5: Adopt One Habit
Focusing on the bad habits you want to break this year can be overwhelming. (Plus, they may not even be that bad. Learn the truth here.) Instead, try to add one good habit to your daily routine—starting now! Want to quit coffee? Make one of your cups decaf today. Trying to eat healthier? Start the day with a piece of fruit. Stick to this for a week, then a month, and soon your daily healthy habits will just be second nature.
New Year's Resolution Day #6: Do Something Fun
Don't force yourself to run before work if you hate running. Treat yourself to a fun workout today—really! Get moving however you like, whether it's yoga, belly dancing, or just jamming out in your bedroom to your favorite high-energy songs. (We have the perfect playlist for you here!) Spend an hour breaking a sweat and having fun, and you'll be more likely to do it again tomorrow. The end result: This will be the year you get in your best shape ever, your way.
New Year's Resolution Day #7: Eat Differently for Just One Day
Before you commit to a strict new eating plan, choose today as the one day of the week to test a diet that interests you. You'll discover obstacles that you'd never anticipate—without feeling like a failure. If you're pleasantly surprised, stick with it all week. (Find out how one raw foodie makes it easy to stick to her diet.)