I’m one of those people that absolutely loves New Years resolutions. Considering I’m already a massive goal-setting junky, you betcha that a huge wave of worldwide motivation to set new positive habits is better than Easter, all my birthdays and Christmas combined. Funnily enough, there seems to be two distinct camps: the resolution lovers and the cynics. Most of those that “hate” New Years resolutions say it’s because “they never last”. And out of those that actually take the time to make New Years resolutions, turns out 80% of them will fail by February. So all in all, seems like failure is pretty much inevitable, and there’s not all that much to get excited about…right?! UNLESS you’re part of the thriving 20% that makes it. It’s not easy, but you can get there. Here’s how.
MAKE THEM REALISTIC.
We all kinda wanna look like Alexis Ren, all kinda wanna release a killer mixed tap, all kinda wanna quit our jobs and make millions being a professional food critic. All these goals are great and if you’re an aspiring musician maybe they’re realistic but it’s also quite likely that they’re not. It’s important to be ambitious, but all in the realm of what’s possible. Be honest with yourself and remember the following rules of life:
- Good things come to those that work hard for it (chances are you won’t hop out of bed one day with 4:1 hip to waist ratio)
- Everything takes longer than you think it will
HOW CAN YOU GET THERE?
Alright so you’ve made some realistic goals. Next up, just bang em out. Easy peasy Larry Sweazy. Except…not really. The hardest part is always execution, so next let’s focus on breaking down your greater goal into smaller targets. What are the things that you can do to ensure you reach that goal? Wanna get fit in 2018? Okay then, how will you get there? Maybe commit to 4 workouts a week. Sounds fair, but try think further than that. Where are you going to do that? Do you need to invest in a gym membership? What exactly are you going to do there? Should you do research on different workout programs? What about your diet? Any healthy swaps you can introduce that might be more realistic than deciding to quit sugar for the rest of your life? Make a step-by-step concrete list of exactly how you will get there.
WHAT ARE POTENTIAL OBSTACLES?
The most common reason why people don’t stick to their workout plans is because of perceived lack of time.
The key is to stay ahead of the game, to tame the lion before it comes back to bite you in the bum.
Understand what will stand in the way of you achieving your goals, and address these issues ahead of time. If you know you’re usually tired after work and find it hard to motivate yourself to workout, then what about working out in the morning? Is there anyway you can reserve a locker at the gym and leave your make up and shower stuff there so that you have to go before work? Maybe the issue isn’t about finding the time to workout, but it’s having the discipline to eat healthily. If you’re a huge sweet tooth and you know you can’t make it through the day without having some type of treat, maybe it’s time to accept that. Work with it, and find a suitable solution. Can you start by get into healthy baking, swapping refined sugar for bananas and white flour for ground oats? Be honest with yourself and acknowledge what will bring you down before it does.
MAKE YOUR PROGRESS “TRACKABLE”
It’s pretty convenient that we live in the age of “trackable” everything. We often focus on the negative side of it but MAN HOW BOUT WE TAKE ADVANTAGE OF THIS BEAUTIFUL ERA. It’s never been easier to track progress and to turn somewhat vague goals into concrete, quantitative objectives. If your resolutions aren’t quantifiable, then try make sure the smaller targets you’ve broken them down into are. Maybe your resolution to “take more time for yourself” can include 10 minutes of reading every evening before bed, or a one hour bath every Sunday night.
FIND WHAT MOTIVATES YOU
Everyone is different, therefore it is important to know yourself and know what helps you stay motivated for your goals. Here are just a few ideas:
- Get someone to keep you accountable. Reach out to the person you know cares about you more than anyone, and tell them your resolutions. Tell them ahead of time that you will be keeping them up to date on how it’s going regularly as a way of staying accountable. Hopefully they’re the kind of person to pester you about it later if you stop.
- Record your progress. There are many different ways to record how you’re keeping up with your resolutions. You can take a more private approach and commit to journaling every evening or simply jotting down your times for a 5km run on your Notes App. Alternatively if you’re up for it, start an accountability social media profile if you think it would help.
- Find people who have a similar goals. Even the most independent of us tend to do better in something if someone else is also involved. If you can find someone to go through the resolution with you, golden. If not, once again take advantage of this wonderfully connected world we live in. Guaranteed you can find a Facebook group full of like-minded people who are working towards a similar target.
ALL THAT BEING SAID…
The truth is, all the above are simply tips, tricks and suggestions on how to stick to your New Years Resolutions. You’re definitely a hell of a lot more likely to be successful if you follow through with the above, but in the end, it’s all on you. Goals don’t get reached without a shit ton of work, and most of the time, achieving resolutions requires significant lifestyle shifts. Even the smallest amount of change is hard, so be prepared for it to be seriously challenging. But with enough resilience, determination, good planning and hard work, there isn’t anything that can’t be achieved.