New year, new you! correct?
Just 14 days ago, shortly after the AdAmAn Club launched its fireworks from the summit of Pikes Peak, you might have resolved to exercise more, lose weight, save or spend more, eat healthier, travel more, and more. I certainly hope you are doing well. Why shouldn’t we hit the gym more, be kinder to others, and take better care of ourselves? After all, it’s 2023 and things will be different… better!
However, despite the best intentions, many struggle to realize their plans once the New Year’s glory fades. According to a study published in the Journal of Clinical Psychology, only 46 percent of people succeed when it comes to making New Year’s resolutions. This means that more than half of people who set goals for the new year will fail!
The study also involved non-determiners, people who didn’t make New Year’s resolutions but had a goal they wanted to achieve during the year. Only 4% of non-resolutioners succeeded in reaching their goals, a much dismal result than those who made New Year’s resolutions.
So what can you do to not fall into the 46% or 4%? I’m here to offer an easy-to-implement advice: make VA Technology your solution partner!
That’s right, take advantage of ready-made apps to guide you, cheer you on, and remind you to keep going when you’re exercising, losing weight, sleeping more regularly, learning to meditate, or quitting smoking.
The apps are free, private between you and your phone, and the VA does not collect information or monitor your usage. Just you and your phone working towards your goals – the app doesn’t judge when you miss the day! Glad you’re back and getting back to your health goals.
Besides being free, getting started is easy. While you’re reading this column, grab your phone, go to the app store and type “VA Veteran Launchpad” into the search section. A blue icon with a rocket will appear, tap that and download. Alternatively, you can visit mobile.va.gov/appstore.
Once downloaded, search the four listed categories to find the perfect app that meets one or more of the goals you set. Then download that particular app and follow its prompts to get started. You may need to go back to the app store and enter a specific app name, as VA Launchpad will take you to a website, which is a bit of a hassle.
If you don’t have a specific app for your New Year’s resolutions or health goals, you might want to try Live Whole Health, which lets you create and customize your goals. I downloaded that app and completed a series of questions and required weekly check-ins to get started.
Even if downloading an application is challenging, VA has you covered.
You can call the VA near you and ask for a facility telehealth coordinator (at VA Eastern Colorado Health Care System, Sierra Miera-Nygaard, 303-399-8020) to have them help you, or call the VA Telehealth National Help desk (866- 651-3180).
After downloading the app, simply follow the prompts or notifications and you have a solution partner with you every day.
I spoke with Bridgett Baer, telehealth coordinator for the Rocky Mountain Network in Virginia. “An added benefit of having this tool is that once you’ve achieved your health goals, you can decide whether you want to maintain it or change how often you check in,” she says. Many apps can grow with you, helping you maintain your hard-won benefits to keep you in top health.”
If you’re still singing “Auld Lang Syne” in mid-January, let VA Technology be your solution partner to help you succeed and reach your health goals this year. You can do it, and the VA can help!
Thanks for letting me go with you after the friendly line.