Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Ready for resolutions?

Courtnay Epp, Alberta Health Services - Have the holidays left you feeling nuttier than a fruitcake?! Are you looking forward to a fresh start in 2017 and hope to kick it off with a New Year’s resolution? Many of us have good intentions about changing something in our lives, but have you ever wondered if you are actually ready to make those changes?

Understanding your readiness to change can be a helpful tool in choosing resolutions that are realistic and achievable. It is crucial to understand that changing patterns of behavior or implementing new patterns of behavior is difficult and takes a lot more than simply raising your awareness that something needs to change. So, before you make a goal, consider where you are in the five stage model of change, keeping in mind it is not always a linear process, where relapse and falling back into old patterns is a normal (and expected) part of the process.

Let’s use quitting smoking as an example. 1. Pre-contemplation- You are not thinking about or have rejected the idea of quitting. 2. Contemplation- You are thinking and talking about quitting and may seek out support. 3. Preparation- You make a plan regarding what it will take to make quitting happen. 4- Action- You are taking positive steps by putting your plan to quit into practice. 5. Maintenance-You achieved your goal and have quit smoking with or without continuing support.
In 2017, most of us would like to make some type of change in our lives, but are not sure if we are ready or have a hard time figuring out how to do it. Keep in mind, the New Year does not need to be a time of creating a huge bucket list or aiming for an extreme make over. In order to be successful, goals need to be simple, measurable, attainable, realistic and timely.
And if quitting smoking is your goal, or you are thinking about quitting, but do not know where to start, AlbertaQuits can help. With proven results, years of experience and thousands of “graduates,” AlbertaQuits is here to help you make your life smoke-free. The services are free, the community is waiting and the water is warm. Dive in and change your life.
Give group support a chance by trying Quitcore. Quitcore is a FREE program that provides Albertans (18+) with the tools and skills they need to quit using tobacco for good. 

Are you ready? Go to or call 1-866-710-QUIT (7848) toll-free for more information and to find out about an upcoming group session in your community.

Courtnay Epp is a health promotion facilitator with Alberta Health Services Population Health. She can be reached by e-mail at

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