As the calendar resets and a new year begins, the perfect time for transformation, reflection and growth is upon us. It’s no wonder so many of us use it as an opportunity to make New Year’s resolutions, but they can be quite daunting, especially if you haven’t had much success in previous years. .
If you’ve been wondering why you give up on your New Year’s resolutions every March, you’re not alone. Each year, millions of Americans set high expectations for themselves in January, to end up exactly where they were last year, whether in terms of health and fitness, sense of money or productivity. .
But like many things, achieving your New Year’s resolutions is a psychology, and you can fine-tune your mindset for success through careful planning and thoughtful goal setting.
But first, let’s talk about why New Year’s resolutions are so hard to keep in the first place.
Why it’s hard to keep New Year’s resolutions
If you find yourself abandoning your New Year’s resolutions by March, determining the underlying cause can help you approach the New Year in a prepared and self-reliant way.
A New Year’s resolution is about where you want to take your year, not what you think you “should” be doing. And at this time of year, people tend to set unrealistic or unattainable goals, setting them up for boredom and disappointment.
Because of this pitfall, it’s important to assess whether your New Year’s resolutions are achievable. Are they measurable? Do they have reasonable time constraints? Can you achieve your goals on time? New Year’s resolutions require a change in habits, and it will take time!
It’s understandable that past failures can leave you a bit jaded with New Year’s resolutions. But don’t let them stop you from progressing! It is important to understand that even the smallest victories are worth celebrating and that every mistake is an opportunity to learn.
And while you may even feel an urge to doubt yourself, remember that focusing your energy on “I can’t” won’t help you achieve your goals. Instead, ask yourself “why is this such a challenge?” As you learn from your behavior patterns, do so with compassion and patience with yourself.
Not knowing your “why”
Too often, people fail to succeed in their New Year’s resolutions because they don’t have their “why” nailed down. And your “why” is crucial to keep you motivated in your goals! For example, many people list “lose weight” as their New Year’s resolution, but they don’t know why. Is it because they want to feel more confident? Is it for health benefits? Or so they can fit into a certain garment?
When you know why you’re embarking on a New Year’s resolution, you can remember why you’re doing it when the going gets tough. And likewise, you’re more likely to abandon your resolutions when you don’t.
When thinking about your New Year’s resolutions, it’s essential that you take responsibility and stay mindful of your actions. Imagine how you want things to look for you a year from now – you can even create a vision board or digital bulletin board, if you like. Keep this vision as a daily reminder of your goals and be sure to enjoy the process of your transformation.
Tips for making your New Year’s resolutions a success
So what exactly can we do to make our New Year’s resolutions stick? The following tips can help you set goals and habits that will not only last, but carry you into the next year.
1. Pick a specific goal
When we make New Year’s resolutions, we tend to get caught up in vague goals like “lose weight” or “be in the morning.” Instead of choosing something ambiguous for your New Year’s resolution, go for specificity.
For example, you can start with a goal like “lose fifteen pounds” or to become a “morning person”, you can establish a morning routine and establish a designated and consistent time throughout the new year.
Choosing an achievable and tangible goal also allows you to plan how you will achieve that goal over the next twelve months.
2. Learn from your mistakes
The topic of New Year’s resolutions is often riddled with visions of progress and achievement. However, it is important to note that errors are a key part of the process.
According to a study, people who were successful in sticking to their resolutions had an average of fourteen slip-ups. But learning from their mistakes, the vast majority of these people reported becoming better and stronger as a result.
3. Start with small steps
Making too many New Year’s resolutions is a common reason why so many fail. If you train too hard at the gym, follow too restrictive a diet, or drastically change your schedule, you may be setting yourself up for failure. Instead, focus on building your habits gradually over time.
If you’re trying to eat healthier, for example, make simple changes for more nutritious choices, then move on to a new goal when you feel comfortable with the new changes, such as reducing portion sizes or cutting out foods altogether. take away food. While this may slow down the overall process at first, it can make a huge difference in your long-term success with your New Year’s resolutions.
4. Plan the obstacles
Unfortunately, there will always be obstacles that can disrupt your plans for your New Year’s resolutions, whether it’s friends inviting you over for an indulgent dinner or an impulsive element that you simply must have.
That’s why it’s important to consider the obstacles you’re likely to face in the first few weeks after setting your New Year’s resolution and make a plan accordingly.
Preparing for the most likely obstacles can help you feel equipped and empowered to face the unexpected obstacles of the new year.
5. Get help
We know this advice is a bit cliché, but that’s because it works! Of course, we are talking about the buddy system. When you have a strong support system for your New Year’s resolutions, it will be easier to hold yourself accountable, which will help you stay motivated. Plus, it’s more fun when you’re working on your plans with a friend or loved one, whether it’s having a gym buddy, having a buddy to budget together, or making plans. meals with your spouse.
Even if you can’t find anyone to help you achieve your goals, be sure to share what you’re doing with family and friends, and explain your goals and why you want to achieve them. This will help keep you accountable and they will encourage you to stay motivated.