Are you waiting for that 2020 reset? Every year, January 1st gets a lot of credit as a fresh start — but how often does that pressure backfire? It has happened to all of us.
Exercise. Read more. See the world (and so on). Big plans for the new year quickly fall short. We kick around in despair and many end up calling it quits by February. “I’ll circle back in December” as another year passes.
Even if you’re one of a select few with resolute success, we all should heed warning. New Year’s resolutions have a tendency to devolve from unforgiving expectations. Perfectly practical (long term) goals are mercilessly pitted on sudden change.
“New Year, New You.” What really goes wrong?
Take for example, many indulge on New Year’s Eve as a final hoorah before beginning a committed diet. They’ve done their research. They’ve pre-stocked their pantry with all the right foods. They’ve planned their intermittent-fasting schedule. They even go to bed feeling ready to rock for the new year.
Yet, come the morning they’re groggy. Metabolism is in a tailspin balancing the night’s excess. Even worse, they’re still 10 hours away from their next eating window. Suffice to say, the new diet didn’t work out.
Ignoring the Body
What could have had a healthy change instead started off with the wrong foot. This example highlights a root problem in failed resolutions. We plan for quick changes without treating our bodies (or psychology) realistically. We idealize an expedient (or easy) change and quickly find defeat. Optimism turns empty, and we give up.
If only metaphorically, to go from cake at midnight right into a keto diet is to risk failure. It’s better to take it easy and balance changes gradually.
Some Practical Health Changes for 2020
New Year’s resolutions are a common study for the science of new habits. Since research says even the most resolute may stumble, we learn that smaller steps are more realistic, and most important in long term changes. 
Consider these gradual health resolutions for 2020:
Stop Drinking Coffee in 2020 — If you’ve been feeling the burn of coffee eat away at consistent energy, then the New Year is all you. You can skip the throes of caffeine withdrawal AND that cold turkey slump with some handy ceremonial matcha. Perfect to defeat coffee’s afternoon energy drop.
- SMALL STEPS: Slowly bring your new daily fuel closer to your A.M. caffeine fix. When you’re ready, drop coffee for a side-effect free transition.
Diet Slowly and Safely (Avoiding Common Mistakes) — The latest diet trends are inevitably on your resolution radar. Be sure that you have the necessary resources and guidelines. Consider steering-away from long term avoidance of entire food groups or macronutrients, and give your body time to learn.
- SMALL STEPS: Rather than drastic changes to what (and when) you eat, be gentle on the approach. Also, if you’re combining new food choices with a new eating schedule, see our review.
Dropping Negative Resistance — The Holidays are often a trigger in and of themselves for New Year’s resolutions. Family, finances, work. Many are seeking a much-needed attitude change in 2020. For some insight to ‘getting in the zone’ and staying stress-free this new year, see here.
- SMALL STEPS: Mindfulness and stress-reduction techniques take time. Start slow, with shorter practices as you become comfortable.
Pick up a Daily Ritual — Similar to a daily mindfulness practice, even the simplest daily ritual can bring stability and reward this new year. This one resolution should be easy to access and care-free. It can also benefit the success of other resolutions, and take no more than 5-10 minutes.
- IDEAS: Give your pets an extra couple minutes of love when you wake up, come home, and before bed. 2) Spend 5 minutes doing something you enjoyed as a kid. 3) Find gratitude with your significant other over some morning matcha.
The Bottom Line
Whatever your plans for the new year, a bit of self reflection and careful planning could lead to amazing changes. Research says that the most success is found happen when people make gradual and realistic changes.
If you’re focused on your health this coming year, before you attempt a radical change, be sure to cover your bases first with a balanced diet and plenty of matcha.