Let me guess. You want to get in shape, lose weight and be less stressed in 2018. Perhaps you want to quit smoking or spend more time with your friends and family. A desire to shake things up and score some self improvement points is something that nearly ½ of us strive for at this time of year. Sadly, only 8% of New Year’s goals are actually ever achieved. But by looking at the secrets behind those who succeed, you can better your chances of keeping your 2018 resolutions.
Successful Resolution Hacks
Quite likely, you overloaded yourself in the past by the way you set or managed your goals. Here are 5 hacks to make sure you get a very different result this year:
- Pick only one resolution. Really. This is where most people get off on the wrong foot from the start. Too many goals is simply too much stress. Having one goal is simply the best way to set yourself up to succeed in the New Year.
- Be specific. While setting ambitious resolutions can be inspirational and fun, the difficulty in achieving them without tangible action steps means that your initial elation can soon give way to frustration. Don’t simply say you’re “going to start going to the gym.” Add to this a clear goal like going to spin classes or going for a power walk every Tuesday and Thursday.
- Take baby steps. Make sure to break your resolution down as far as you can, to the simplest tasks possible. Even if this means doing something for as little as 60 seconds to ensure success. The rule of thumb here is to set your beginning steps to a level where you know you can have easy success. Here are some examples:
- Resolution: quit smoking – cut back on that one cigarette you have after breakfast.
- Resolution: eat heathy food – start substituting one of your two daily desserts for an apple.
- Resolution: lose weight – every morning or after work go for a 2-3 minute walk or run around the block
- Resolution: manage stress – meditate for 2-3 minutes every morning after you wake up.
After a week or two of success, you can then add one more level of challenge to your goal…but not before.
- Hold yourself accountable for what you want to change. Tell others or write it down. The people around you can have a significant impact on your behaviour. So if you tell some of your friends or family about the new tiny steps that you’re going to take, you are more likely to stick to them. Another tip here is to write your goal down, as this too will help you reach your goal.
- Keep believing you can do it. Just setting a goal raises your chances of achieving it considerably, so give yourself a pat on the back. But within weeks or months, many people begin abandoning their resolutions as they hit the inevitable bumps along the way. More often than not people who fall off the wagon blame their lack of willpower, and they are right, sort of. Willpower is like a muscle that needs to be trained. You have as much willpower as you think you have, essentially. This means that on some level, your journey of self-improvement will be a self-fulfilling prophecy.
Best wishes for a wonderful New Year and here’s to hoping that 2018 will be a joyful one for the world, and a year where all of us get one step closer to the people that we want to be.
Brockway specializes in personal and professional sustainability with a focus in the areas of leadership, wellbeing and employee engagement. We have a variety of products and services to help you reach your individual, team or corporate goals.
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