Resolution or Commitment? - Dr. Connie Jeon

Hi, My name is Connie Jeon. Happy New Year!

In celebration of a new year, most people start to think about their new year’s resolution.  So in light of the new year, I challenge you to change the way you think about resolutions.

  • Resolution by definition is a firm decision to do or not to do something.  So when I think about resolution, it relies heavily on one’s “will power” to make changes.
  • Will power is one’s ability to exert deliberate control in doing something or to restrain one’s own impulses.

According to the US News, 80% of new years resolutions to lose weight fail every year.  This is because will power alone is not enough when making healthy changes.

In order for you to achieve long term health gains, YOU need to make a firm commitment to living a healthy life. This means getting clear on WHY you are making healthy changes. Resolution implies negative resolve, while commitment implies positive force in what you believe.  See the difference?

In working with patients from all walks of life, I’ve learned that resolution and will power are short lived. In order for my patients and clients to make long term changes in their lifestyle, they need a clear “why” when committing to those changes. And it’s not enough to be committed.  We need accountability and small incremental steps in order to achieve whatever we decide, as opposed to making big changes all at once.

So whether you are resolving to lose weight or start a exercise regimen, rather than relying on sheer will power, I highly recommend that you define WHY you are wanting to lose weight or exercise. For example, you may want to lose weight because you don’t want to just grow old. You want to retire to a life full of potential.  Potential for travels, enjoyment, leisure, and to thrive after retirement, rather than being stuck visiting doctors offices for medical issues and pain that keeps you from accomplishing these things.

Something happens when you are “committed”.  You start making steps toward the goal you set and step by step, you get closer to your goals and voila, you are transformed.  Instead of making a quick fix, you have a long term vision for what you want to become.

Change is an inside job first, then the behavior, and of course the outcome.
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