In the last blog, I talked about taking time in January to be sure your exercise goals for the new year are based on facts rather than energy-draining myths.  However, what do we do with that natural drive to set goals and get back on track this time of year?  Let’s  take a look at what can we do instead of diving into action.

Check out this article by Beth Benatti Kennedy, a career coach and close friend who is full of wisdom when it comes to finding a career you love and achieving work/life balance. Although this blog post is from a couple of years ago and is directed toward career goals, the message is timeless and crosses all areas of well-being. She proposes three questions to ask yourself each January instead of setting resolutions. Why not set resolutions? Because January is a great time for recovery from the holidays and reflection of the year past. December is no time for resolutions and goals when heads are still spinning from the end-of-year holidays.

Here are the questions revised for this year and for reaching your health and well-being goals.

• What went well in 2017? What accomplishments are you really excited about?

• What did you learn in 2017?  What worked when you did stay motivated?

• What would you have done differently? This third question will begin to prepare you for having some 2018 goals that are based on what you learned last year, rather than just a reaction to the holiday stress.

So, enjoy a January free of the pressure to set resolutions. Take a walk to help your brain learn and be creative as you ponder these questions.  When you return, jot down the answers.  Let them “simmer” a bit until February 1st. You will be ready to set goals for 2018 that are well-thought out and meaningful.