On average it is estimated that 92% of New Year’s Resolutions fail. Why?
The term along makes it seem short lived, a one day hurrah to get everyone pumped for the coming days. It does not imply the hard work necessary to obtain a possibly unrealistic resolution.
Here’s some ways to combat the mindset and achieve success with your goals.
1) No goal is worth obtaining if you don’t value it.
2) Rather than one ULTIMATE goal- set up smaller ones to achieve throughout the year
3) Success can only be gained with daily effort, recognize it won’t happen overnight.
4) Why limit yourself to one area for a goal?
No goal is worth obtaining if you don’t value it.
Don’t like the gym? Why resolve to join one just because it’s a new year? Look for other ways to be physically active like: Walk in the park 20 minutes a day, or look for a class you can join rather than an entire gym. Same thing goes for those who want to get more “me” time. If reading is not something you love- don’t try to start out reading a novel. Look for audio books or documentary’s to learn more about topics. Selecting a goal only works if it’s something you really enjoy or something you are willing to give up everything for. Ex. Quitting smoking is a big new year’s resolution- and many replace this with vaping- but if the goal of not smoking was to limit tobacco for lung cancer prevention- vaping has a condition called popcorn lung. The next question is: what will you miss out if you are no longer here? Let that become your why. The same logic follows for those trying to lose weight. How many years have you resolved to lose weight, only to gain it all back plus some? The WHY has to be the motivation? What will you lose by being overweight?- Money on medical bills, longevity- you may not see your grandchildren grow up due to complications of medical conditions associated with obesity, or perhaps you simply want to be a size 2. If the size thing in the past didn’t work for you- its because the value was not there. Find something you VALUE that you want to change- and make that your goal for the new year.
Rather than one ultimate goal- set up smaller ones to achieve all year.
If being more mindful was your goal, how can you measure your progress? Broad, undefined goals are difficult to maintain because there is no way to track your success. Being mindful is great, some ideas on alternate goals would be: 10 minutes of personal time daily, 2 yoga classes a week with focus on breathing, or posting 1 thing on social media daily that promotes positive thinking. From here, you can build bigger goals to ultimately state “I worked on being mindful last year”. This holds true for quitting smoking- give yourself a goal: If you started at 20 cigarettes a day, give yourself one less cigarette per day each week. In 20 weeks your goal will have been met, and it’s not so daunting. If running was a goal- again start with small goals to achieve. I ran 1 mile this week, next week I am going to run 1.5 miles. Slowly make progress up to a 5k, ½ marathons, or a marathon. Or, if distance is not valued, the act of running alone- then use time. I ran 5 minutes today, next week I will work up to 10 minutes daily, etc.
Success can only be gained with daily effort. It will not happen overnight.
No city was built in a day. No champion was created in 1 week. Time and effort are the necessary requirements to achieve your dreams. Getting started is the hardest part. Simply writing down goals will make you more likely to achieve some success with each one. Joining a group activity that supports the goals will increase the likeliness of meeting the goal. Finding a “why” does it matter to you and posting that somewhere (home screen of a phone, near a work desk, on the bathroom mirror) and repeating it multiple times throughout the day will increase the odds of meeting your goal. There will be bad days, and that is to be expected. The champions are the ones who say “that was yesterday” and move forward with the same determination as day one every morning.
Why limit yourself to one goal?
Rather than focusing on one thing all year long (weight, wellbeing, mental awareness, exercise, smoking, nutrition, etc)- theme every month of the year. Pick one thing and start there on January. Then in February add a second goal- still working on the first goal. March add a 3rd goal- still working on the first 2 goals. This will give you a new motivation for each month, and help you to see how far you have progressed overall throughout the year. Example: January- start walking/running 10 minutes a day and increase to 30 minutes. February- Keep walking/running 30 minutes a day, add 2 cups of green leafy vegetables to meals throughout the day until you get 5 cups of greens daily. March- Keep walking/running 30 minutes a day, 5 cups of greens daily, drink ½ your body weight in ounces. Keep working on each goal- knowing some days you may fall short- the important point is to look back at your calendar and see all the days you DID NOT fall short, but rose above the challenge. Adding things in like financial wellbeing (save $2.00/day or $100.00/month), positive outlook (pray 3 minutes a day, meditate 10 minutes a day, post positive thoughts 1x/day, etc), Social Wellbeing (do one social event a month, make a new friend at work, or reduce bad social habits like drinking and smoking), Learn Something New (find a hobby, and practice at it weekly- photography, yoga, dance, cooking, travel, trivia, crochet, golf, swimming, etc), improve a skill set (writing, reading, communication, public speaking- it could be work related to achieve career success), Exercise, Nutrition, Hydration, etc. The most important aspect of this is that you write down daily your achievements on a calendar. Then review the last day of each month and see how far you have come.