What’s the point of resolutions?

The glow of Christmas has worn off, it’s nearly February, and now the enormity of the new year lies before us. What’s the point in making new years resolutions?

The answer is the bodies own reward system. The feel good hormones dopamine, serotonin, oxytocin and endorphins are important chemicals created and used by the body. Your marvellous machine, the human body, will release different chemicals in response to different situations.

Try giving to yourself instead of taking away

The thing is with resolutions is that they often focus on giving something up, and the body doesn’t like this. As soon as it feels scarcity then cortisol and adrenaline will kick in, the stress hormones.

Instead of taking from yourself, try giving it something instead.

There’s even been a study into the resolutions made by people, and the ones that focus on adding something to our lives are more successful that the ones that take away.

A large-scale experiment on New Year’s resolutions: Approach-oriented goals are more successful than avoidance-oriented goals (plos.org)

Instead of stopping things, you should start doing things

Per Carlbring

The beauty of this is that it’ll be different for everyone. What brings joy to one person won’t be the same for another person.

So find your joy. Marie Konda has built an industry from encouraging people to find what “sparks joy” in their homes and belongings. It’s basically finding what sparks serotonin!

How to make resolutions

One of the best ways to do this is to set goals, and to break these down into micro goals. Each micro goal has it’s own shot of dopamine.

I aim to get back in the sea swimming this year. I miss the rush of terror from the cold water and the buzz from conquering my fears. I’ve got mini goals along the way, and I’ve also got a long term timetable for this,

I know it’s going to take months to get back to the point where I could comfortably swim two and a half miles in the sea. But I’m not in a rush, and there’s also less chance of me beating myself up for not sticking to schedule.

My plan also involves shopping for new kit, so I’ll also get that infamous buzz from adding things to that shopping cart.

I even bought myself a new mug for Christmas so that every time I have a cuppa I’m reminded about getting back in the sea. Oh and I love bears.

What’s the point of resolutions and sports massage?

But what’s all this got to do with sports massage?

A couple of things.

Massage has been proven to also boost these feel good chemicals. It could be that an invigorating sports massage will help boost that post Christmas fatigue, and help you deal with the new year stress.

If your goals involve any sporty activities, or even finishing the garden and doing some decorating, then finding those cranky muscles and figuring out ways to move better will bring so much more joy and freedom to your time.

So what’s the point to resolutions? It’s because your body is craving those chemicals!

So what plans are you going to make to keep that brain and body glowing?