Posts Tagged 'new choices'

Challenge Yourself

Image result for a goal without a plan is just a wish

We are one week into the Spring 2018 semester. I am excited to be back writing for all of you for my last semester here at Marquette, and even more excited to share that a new intern will be joining us this semester. You will be hearing from her very soon. And, I have to say that I have been thinking about writing this blog post ever since winter break started. Back at the end of the fall semester, I left you off with the December Kindness post. This post, along with New Year’s gave me the idea to challenge myself, and to challenge you to challenge yourself.

With a new year, a lot of us make New Year’s resolutions that we ultimately do not end up keeping. Some of us might still be going strong, while others of us might have fallen off the train already. I want to remind you, that it doesn’t need t be the beginning of the year to set new goals, or to work on bettering yourself. This is something we should all be doing each and every day. Having a minor setback during your workout goals, or healthy eating goals is not the end of the world. I repeat, this is not the end of the world. This sort of thing happens to all of us. If you skip a day, or just happen to have the perfect excuses, that is okay. I have a solution for all of us.

Challenge yourself. How can you do this and stick to it you ask? It’s easier than you think. First, you need to define your goals. And by this, I mean you need to make your goals as specific as possible. Saying that you are going to “eat healthy” is not setting yourself up for success. Define what you mean by eating healthy. Do research, define your goals and motives behind it. If you want to “workout more,” what do you mean by that? Specify how many times a week, set a routine, stick to it. And the most important part to sticking to your goals, is KEEPING YOURSELF ACCOUNTABLE. I do this by keeping a journal. I write down my goals, I define them, I give them a specific time frame, and I keep track of my progress along the way. This really works, I promise! Sometimes conquering goals can be pretty tough, but working towards goals and feeling a sense of accomplishment and pride is always worth it.

One simple way to start a new goal is to challenge yourself with a one-month challenge. These can be anything from only taking the stairs, eating vegetables everyday, or starting up meditation, or writing poetry. If you have a goal, there is bound to already be a 30-day challenge out there to help you reach that goal. You can Google 30-day challenges including health challenges, hobby challenges, mindfulness challenges, spirituality challenges, anything you want to challenge yourself to, do it. I want all of us here at Marquette to challenge yourself to something new and positive in 2018, and at the end of the year, be able to say that we are happier and healthier than we were at the beginning of the year.

We take our lives one day at a time, one decision at a time, and we have the power to make those moments what we want them to be. Challenge yourself to a new, and improved self this year.

Alicia Diedrich

New Year, New Me

Wishing everyone a happy New Year and belated holiday season from the Marquette University Employee Wellness Center. But before we go any further, I want to take a second to introduce myself because I’m new around these parts. My name is Sarah Schlaefke, and I am a junior here at Marquette studying journalism and Spanish. This semester I have decided to take my passion of healthy living and share it with you right here. How does this girl know anything about living well, you ask? Well, I am no 10542808_686438604774954_562593613831696879_oprofessional, but through lots of reading, fact checking, trial and error and real life application, what you read on here is what I have learned. In my free time you can find me engulfed by the most recently released new musical albums or kickboxing down the street at 9Round Fitness. All right, now enough about me.


As the New Year is rolling in, most people like to kick it off with a new goal or resolution. Drink less soda, hit the gym more often, even just writing letters to old friends or family sprinkle New Year’s resolution lists. And for the first few weeks, maybe even a month, we all feel great completing another day of sticking with our newest lifestyle change. Sadly, though, the will power usually wears out, and by the time spring break shows up, our resolutions are as far out of our minds as school is.

So, what is the cure to the New Year’s resolution fad? How can we change our hard-to habits into an aspect of our lifestyles? Here are a few techniques I use to do my best to keep my goals going.

It is often heard that it takes a certain amount of days to create a habit, but really establishing a daily routine is the key. A lifestyle is not created in a month; it’s created in a lifetime. Setting aside time daily devoted to your goal. Take the hour to run on a treadmill at the gym, the half hour to cut up fresh veggies or the 45-minute-nap you are fitting in to get more rest. Adding the time into you calendar helps make it a priority. And don’t let other things take up its time slot!


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Another effective resolution-keeping tactic is the buddy system. Whether your buddy is a co-worker, friend or family member, having another person devoted to the same New Year’s goal success will help hold you accountable for sticking with it. Talk to those around you and see if their resolutions line up with yours. See if your family wants to partake in a whole-house resolution. Offer encouragement and constructive criticism to your counterparts. You know what they say, the struggle is easier with someone by your side.

My last (and favorite) suggestion is all the hype and everyone’s favorite excuse these days: treat yo’self! What do I mean? Well, after all of your hard work of committing to better your life, you deserve a reward. In your New Year’s resolution, also include a New Year’s reward. Tell yourself that by the time the summer rolls around, you deserve a new swimsuit if you stick to your gym resolution. Or if you give up soda, allow yourself to try a new juice every other week. Life is all about balance, so rewarding yourself for taking care of yourself is also a part of a healthy lifestyle.

With the commitment to a healthy lifestyle comes the expected down day where we might screw up, be too tired or just blatantly not want to deal with our new goal. When this happens, it is important not to be too hard on yourself and just pick up your routine again the next day. Now that you have these tricks up your sleeve, hopefully the resolution struggle can turn into the lifestyle you planned for.

-Sarah Schlaefke

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