If you have failed to keep one, more, or even all of your 2016’s New Year’s goals, take heart, 2017 is around the corner. If that’s not enough to cheer you up, picture this: only 8% of people are actually able to realize their resolutions, according to a study conducted by the Journal of Clinical Psychology, University of Scranton.1 Being among the other 92% is no biggie!
Making resolutions is a good thing in itself; it tells us that we are on the right track to self-improvement. Sticking to those New Year’s goals and then finally achieving them is another story all together. To work towards those goals and to see resolutions through, we need to change our approach into a more logical and practical one.
If your New Year’s resolution is to lose weight, then to make this idea into a goal, you have to break it down into realizable and measurable steps.2 Try making fortnightly or monthly goals such as, “In January, I’ll go off processed grains and fried foods. In February, I will do one month of regular jogging.” By breaking down your New Year’s goals into tangible steps, you’d be that much closer to actual results.
Self-improvement is an ongoing process.3 You cannot turn into your version of perfection overnight, or even in the course of a year. Making a long, long list of New Year’s goals or rather ideas will only pile your plate too high and make you bin the whole lot within the first month. It’s better to aim to do just one thing, and do it right, seeing it to its rightful end rather than aiming too high and achieving practically nothing.
Many times we slip on our resolutions because they haven’t come from the right place. “I want to lose weight because I want to look great/because my boyfriend wants me to” will not provide you with the right motivation to stick to your New Year’s goals.4 Make sure your “why” is coming from a good and place, lest your urge to stick to the resolution will also fade away as quickly as your reason.
The reason why some people are able to lose weight faster, save money better, or even stick to something as simple and basic as eating the right food, is because they go public with this information.5 Keeping a diary or a journal is great, but something that is privy to just your eyes may make you let down your guard once too often.
A blog is a better option, because you will have people reading your daily battles and sharing your struggles. You will find public support and encouragement, and a place to share your highs and lows. By making your New Year’s goals public, you connect to people in the same boat and enter a positive circle of commitment.
We follow traffic rules simply because if and when we don’t, other than putting ourselves and others at risk, we also end up being monetarily fined. Commit to giving yourself a fine if you slip from any of your New Year’s goals. Put the money in a fund, give it to charity, or simply stash it away for a rainy day.
Don’t let your belief in yourself slip. It’s okay to have a bad day, week or even month – it’s okay to feel disillusioned or disheartened – don’t let your blue mood shake your belief in yourself. If you believe that you can achieve your New Year’s goals, you will!
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