Why I don’t set New Year’s resolutions
89% of New Year’s resolutions are broken by Jan 14th
What is a resolution anyway?
It’s a firm decision to do, or not do, something.
My own track record definitely supports the statistic…. the only New Year’s resolutions I’ve ever kept was to stop donating money to the gym. Why did this one stick? Because I was clear on the ultimate goal, I was both flexible and realistic about how I could make it happen, and once I'd made a decision, I took action. In this case I realised the only way forward was to use the membership I was paying for or cancel it all together.
So what leads the 11% who actually DO achieve their New Year’s resolutions to success?
They remain laser-focused on reaching their desired outcome while being flexible in HOW they make it happen.
Would you rather be in the 11% who achieve their New Year's resolutions? I know I would!
If you want a better chance of achieving your ‘resolutions’ then I’d suggest turning them into goals; and, there is a fairly simple process you can follow, it’s really just a matter of actually doing it!
So many people use the New Year as a time to make changes, and it’s understandable why. Over the last few years through I’ve become more and more aware of the importance of planning for your success and so my New Year process begins in December!
One of my goals for 2017 was to get out of my comfort zone more… decided I wanted to do six new things; these things had to be set ahead of time and now that we’re in December I’m happy with what I've achieved.
No I didn’t do all six things on my list, and I’m totally ok with that as a recovering perfectionist. Progress over perfection is important to me and part of embracing the progress, for me, is taking the time to reflect on why I didn’t achieve something I set out to and to learn from it so I can apply those learnings moving forward.
One of my greatest lessons this year has been that if you don’t keep actively working towards things, they don’t happen. And even though I know this in theory, I still sometimes need a reminder to stick at it.
Also, why wait till January to set your goals for the year and lose the time available to you right now? I don’t know about you, but I am a girl who wants to move mountains and needs all the time available to me.
So make the most of December people, review your year – What when well? What do you want to change? Where do you want to be this time next year; physically, emotionally, financially, spiritually??? Get really clear – drop the shoulds, coulds, and BS stories we tell ourselves…. Get really honest with yourself – there is no point in setting any goal that you don’t whole heartedly want to achieve!
Once you’re clear about it – create a vision board. YES I did just say that…… make your goal visual, it activates more areas in the brain, becomes a constant reminder that helps keep you focused – and remember, what you focus on is what you get! So once you’ve made said vision board put it somewhere obvious.
Once you have the required clarity, it’s time to WRITE IT DOWN – being mindful of the language you’re using. This builds on the ‘what you focus on is what you get’ idea and has more of an impact on us than we are consciously aware of. So for example instead of having a goal like "pay off debt" (where your focus is still on DEBT every time you read that goal), you could write something like "have a healthy bank account". Choose words that resonate with you – continuing to be specific!
Break it down into bite size stepping stones makes working towards a large goal much more mentally achievable and gives you smaller wins along the way which help to maintain momentum – and hey, who doesn’t like to add another gold star to the chart!?!?!
Using the healthy bank account goal as our example still…. Let’s say the goal is to have a balance of $1,500 at 30 December 2018 (where the balance is currently $300 overdrawn) it would be helpful to know that this means, $150 per month goes towards this goal and then even breaking it down further based on how often you get paid…. Whatever works best for you!
Then…… and this is really important…. Find a time in your month (maybe even each week) to sit down and review your goal/s. What is working well? What isn’t and why isn’t it? It is much easier to make 10 small adjustments throughout the year than to wait until November and have an ‘oh crap’ moment!
1. Plan for success
2. Reflect on previous experiences
3. Identify learnings
4. Get clear
5. Make it visual
6. Write it down
7. Create stepping stones
8. Refer to it regularly
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