Embrace Lasting Change: A 12-Week Year Approach to Creating New Habits and Healthy Life Choices

. elissa swihart hannah chijioke-davis identity & self-discovery personal growth transformation skills unlock your potential Feb 19, 2024

Hey there, friends!


We are well into the new year, and if you’re like many, back in January you were invigorated to make positive changes and hoped to make this year a great year with positive impact for your life! The beginning of the year is full of such promise and hope as it stretches before us… it feels like we have all the time in the world as we look at the months ahead of us!


I love that time of year and it’s great to be focused on positive changes and impact, however, now that we are getting into March, how are you doing with progress towards those big goals? Are you still meeting your mark? Or have you begun to slip?


“I missed my water goal for today, I will try again tomorrow”

“Ugh, I didn’t workout this morning… but that’s ok, I still have months until summer time”

“I haven’t been mindful or meditated since the second week of January, I will try to be better about that next week”


Only to wake up a week later and realize you haven’t even thought about working out or eating healthy or being mindful… or any of the other list of “resolutions” you promised yourself back in January?? And then either stuff the discouragement or fully give up on the hope you had for a better you this year?


Does any of that sound familiar?

Am I the only one with this experience?

I don’t think so!


We humans are so great at creating grand dreams and lofty goals, without putting into play the smaller steps or daily disciplines that will help us actually reach those big goals. I don’t want this to be the experience for this year - for me or for you. Let’s make 2024 a year to talk about – the one where we actually meet and achieve our dreams and desires!!


So today, let's dive into the nitty gritty – one that promises to revolutionize the way you approach habit formation and healthy life choices. As a transformation coach working with clients to ignite clarity and vision, I know the incredible power of the 12-Week Year approach in fostering lasting change.


Here is the old picture: it's the start of a new year, and like many, you're filled with aspirations of becoming the best version of yourself. You set resolutions, jot down goals, and vow to make this year the year of breakthroughs. But somewhere along the line, life gets in the way, and those resolutions start to fade into the background.



Enter the NEW approach, the “12-Week Year”, this is a game-changer in the realm of personal development (there is a great book on this, titled the same, written by Moran and Lennington, which takes you through the steps in detail). This approach condenses a year's worth of goals and actions into focused, 12-week cycles, fostering a sense of urgency and accountability that propels you towards tangible results. So, how can you leverage this methodology to cultivate new habits and embrace healthier choices? Let's unpack it together.


1. Clarity is Key: Before embarking on any journey of change, it's crucial to gain crystal-clear clarity on what you want to achieve. Take a moment to reflect on your long-term vision for health and wellness. What does success look and feel like to you? Define your objectives with precision, anchoring them in your core values and aspirations.


2. Set SMART Goals: The 12-Week Year thrives on the concept of setting SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, Time-bound) goals. Break down your overarching vision into bite-sized, actionable goals that are attainable within a 12-week timeframe. Whether it's committing to regular exercise, adopting a nutritious diet, or prioritizing self-care, ensure your goals are concrete and measurable. And here is an important tip: write your goals down and put them where you will see them EVERY SINGLE DAY. I cannot stress this enough! What is in front of us, is what gets our attention and time. Studies have proven this time and again.


3. Craft Your Action Plan: With your goals in sight, it's time to craft a strategic action plan that outlines the steps you'll take to manifest them. Identify the habits and routines that align with your objectives and incorporate them into your daily life. Whether it's scheduling regular workout sessions, meal prepping for the week ahead, or dedicating time for mindfulness practices, consistency is key.


4. Embrace the Power of Accountability: Accountability serves as a potent catalyst for change. Enlist the support of a trusted friend, family member, or coach who can hold you accountable to your commitments. Share your goals and action plan with them, and schedule regular check-ins to track your progress. Knowing that someone is cheering you on and holding you answerable can fuel your motivation and resilience.


5. Iterate and Adapt: In the journey of habit formation, flexibility is paramount. Embrace a mindset of continuous improvement, and be willing to iterate and adapt your approach based on feedback and results. If a particular strategy isn't yielding the desired outcomes, don't be afraid to pivot and explore alternative methods. Remember, the path to success is rarely linear – it's about learning, evolving, and staying committed to your growth.


6. Celebrate Milestones: As you progress on your 12-Week Year journey, take the time to celebrate milestones along the way. Whether it's hitting a fitness milestone, overcoming a dietary challenge, or experiencing a breakthrough in your mindset, acknowledge and celebrate your achievements. Cultivating a culture of celebration reinforces positive reinforcement and motivates you to keep pushing forward.


7. Reflect and Refocus: At the end of each 12-week cycle, carve out time for reflection and refocus. Celebrate your wins, acknowledge areas for growth, and recalibrate your goals for the upcoming cycle. What worked well? What could be improved? Use these insights to refine your approach and set yourself up for even greater success in the next phase of your journey.


We have another great mindfulness for you today, to help you release trapped emotions. Listen here.


Remember, friends, lasting change is not an overnight endeavor – it's a journey of self-discovery, resilience, and commitment. By embracing the 12-Week Year approach, you empower yourself to cultivate new habits and make healthier life choices that transcend fleeting resolutions. So, take that first step, anchor yourself in clarity and vision, and embark on a transformational journey towards the radiant, vibrant life you deserve. Connect with us for extra support and join our community. We are here and ready to cheer you on!


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