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3 mental strategies that will help you accomplish your 2021 goals

Do these small check-ins with yourself throughout the day to reinforce positive habits and keep your head in the game.
Close-Up Of Young Woman
Especially when it comes to physical goals, the battle to stick with it is largely mental. Dina Popovic / Getty Images
/ Source: TODAY

Have you started thinking about your New Year's resolution? Did you just cringe while reading that question? It's OK if you typically start January going strong ... only to lose sight of your goal (and any bit of motivation) by the end of the month.

Especially when it comes to physical goals (workout five times a week, run a 5k, lose the quarantine weight), the battle is largely mental. So having some ticks up your sleeve to get your mind right can make all the difference in sticking with it.

Here are a few tricks to help you add a little "oomph" to your efforts. Do these three small things each day to reinforce your positive habits throughout the whole day.

1. Morning mantra meditation

Before scrolling through Instagram or checking emails, read a mantra full of positive affirmations related to your goal. For example, if your goal is to eat healthier or work out four times per week, write out a few sentences that reinforce that goal.

“I feel so great when I exercise four times per week! I love how strong my body feels after a workout.”

Save this mantra in the “notes” section of your phone, or write it out on a piece of paper to keep on your nightstand.

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Then, in the morning, read your mantra and meditate on it by breathing slowly in and out through your nose, as if you’re breathing in new energy to start the day on a positive note!

2. Afternoon affirmation

Set an alarm on your phone or an event in your calendar with your name on it. Use this as a reminder to give yourself a compliment at that specific time. If your day is especially stressful, this will be a little break and a chance to reconnect to yourself.

The more you make time for yourself, the more you reinforce that you value yourself. Then, the more likely you are to want to do positive things for yourself.

Affirm what a great lunch you just ate or how productive you are or even just affirm the fact that you took a pause in your day to think about an affirmation! A little pause can go a long way.

3. Evening dreaming

Before your head hits the pillow, sit up in bed and imagine how you’ll feel once you accomplish your resolution. Imagine how you’ll look. Imagine what you’ll be saying to yourself: How will your self-talk sound?

Program your subconscious right before you fall asleep so that you literally create your own dreams!

I encourage all of my private weight-loss clients to do this with their weight-loss goals especially because they can imagine themselves at their goal size in their favorite outfit. They can picture themselves catching a glimpse in the mirror and smiling at how good they feel. By reminding yourself of your goals in these small ways, you’ll keep your resolution on the forefront of your mind multiple times per day.

Practice makes perfect, so the more frequently you’re able to practice making yourself and your goal a priority, the more perfectly you’ll be able to follow your plan to reach and achieve your goal.