Every New Year we pledge to ourselves a resolution or a few. Sadly, the reality of achieving the resolution is in no way as easy as deciding on it and many resolutions simply wall to the wayside. But there are ways you can decide on New Year’s Resolution you actually stand a good chance of sticking to. Try these tips this year:
1. Set Just One Resolution
According to UK Professor Richard Wiseman who has conducted numerous studies, we are far more likely to succeed when we concentrate all our energies on changing just one aspect of our behaviour or negative lifestyle choices.
2. Don't Seek to Repeat Previous Resolutions
You leave yourself wide open for frustration and disappointment if you try to recapture resolutions taken in the past. They failed for a reason. Set a new one and focus on success this time round.
3. Don't Decide Your Resolution at the Last Minute
Plan ahead and think carefully about an attainable resolution. Don't start boozing on New Year's Eve and make a decision over your future with bleary eyes and a fuzzy head. Reflect on what you really want to achieve and how to make that possible a few days ahead before the year is out.
4. Take the Step-by-step Approach
Breaking your ambitions into a series of small, achievable steps where you focus on the sub-target along the way will help you to achieve the resolution you set yourself.
5. Be Original and Don't Run with the Crowd
Instead of thinking about the usual, "must get fit, must lose weight, must buy fewer shoes", think about the aspect of your life that needs most changing and what you really aspire to do with your life.
6. Draw up a Checklist of Your Achievements
Marking off your step-by-step achievements on a checklist will serve as a reminder of how far you've still have to go - but will also serve as a motivator. You'll see how far you've already come towards meeting your ultimate target. The checklist should be a positive reminder of how much better life will be once you have achieved your goal.
7. Build in Treats
Every time you reach a sub-goal, treat yourself and give yourself a bit of praise. You will maintain a sense of progress that way and keep up the momentum of your motivation.
8. Use a Buddy System for Support
If you tell family and friends about your ambitions, you are far more likely to enlist their support. Show them your checklist with attainable goals, so they can support you every step of the way.
9. Be Realistic about the Inner Traitor
Every so often your inner traitor will lead you into temptation and you'll revert back to old habits. View these incidents as temporary setbacks not an overall failure and reason to give up. You're human! And that means to err occasionally.
10. Keep a Journal to Make It Real
Somehow, seeing things written down makes them more real. Draw up your plans and record your progress - and occasional setbacks - in a journal, either by hand, on a computer, or using an app. You can even use a notice board with pictures or a calendar on your wall. Just keep a progress record - that's the important thing to remember.
I like these tips. They are sensible and useful and also help your manage your own expectations of what you can reasonably achieve if you set the right goals. Have you decided on your resolutions yet? Will you heed these tips in doing so?