What that does is focuses our effort on dieting, exercising, or other activities designed to help us lose unwanted pounds. (I’ve never had this problem, by the way. With me, it’s always been the opposite: too skinny!) We do not, however, think of the habits of mind underlying the outward condition we wish to change.
In other words, by focusing on a smaller waist, many fail to see the bigger picture: lack of self-discipline! So a more useful New Year’s resolution would be holistically based on a personal commitment to improve one’s self-discipline, not eat less or exercise more.
What this does is creates a goal that a person can work toward knowing that the goal can never be fully achieved. This, in turn, takes away the possibility of abject failure. You keep trying. You keep working. And you will know when you see real progress toward whatever result you wish to achieve. Don’t just change your measurements, change your mind.
Not to belabor this but, fifth among Ms. Barnett’s “7 Things That Hold Us Back” she discusses the weight problem among African-American women. She says, “Approximately ... 80% are overweight or obese, which puts us at a much higher risk for heart disease, diabetes, cancer, and many more life-threatening problems.”
I don’t know what the statistics say about other population groups, but I know they are also high, especially for children. The sixth suggestion was “try something new.” She writes: “There’s nothing wrong with your local barbecue spot ..., but the world is a big place. Why not try something new this weekend?”
What? Try something new? Eat some type of food I’ve never even tasted before? Yep. It runs back to the idea of habits. We are creatures of habit, and the best way to break old habits is by developing new ones. We develop new ones by trying something new.