"It's important that you each come to this conversation with an open mind," she says. Joyce also recommends that you both have an idea of what the other wants to talk about pre-conversation; blindsiding your boyfriend with the fact that this is the year you intend to get married and have a baby probably won't end with him on one knee. "It's best to bring targets that have been discussed between you. Surprise targets can put your partner on the defensive, sending your whole process into choppy waters."
2. Focus on enhancing, not correcting. Go easy on yourself—and your partner. Think about things you want to bring into your life, rather than things you want to eliminate.
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"Resolutions are really based on judgments of what you believe is wrong with you," says Joyce. Rather than thinking about eliminating weight, consider how to Usher in health and recreation. This shift in thinking will keep you positive, and prevent either you or your partner from thinking critical thoughts about the other one. Which sounds great to me, because the last thing I want my husband thinking about is the fact that I need to correct my jiggly parts.
3. Choose fun priorities. Often, I tend to tackle the biggest challenge just to prove I can. Just as often? I run out of steam really quickly, like that time I committed to becoming a vegan but was noshing on a cheese pizza by Valentine's Day.
"In our culture, experiences that are really hard and take much effort are highly valued as the path to success," says Joyce. "The real truth is that our talents and abilities come easily, are fun and engage us." Whether you're exploring goals for yourself or as a couple, your relationship is going to thrive when you're having fun and feeling fulfilled—and it's only going to suffer if you're feeling snippy because you miss cheese. "Approach the process as a fun adventure giving you both the opportunity to explore what would most enhance and contribute to your relationship and each other," she recommends.
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3. Keep the communication going. If you're working towards a goal you set together, make sure you're keeping the dialogue going.