We’re coming closer to that time of year again when many will be declaring their New Year’s resolutions. Millions will be dead set on losing weight, getting in better shape, eating healthier, drinking less, and on and on and on. These are all admirable (and very achievable goals), so why do most of us abandon our goals for the year?
If you are one of the millions of people who make New Year’s resolutions each year, keep reading. We are going to get to the root of why New Year’s resolutions don’t work and what you can do so you actually follow through with yours goals for the year.
As humans, we are creatures of habit…habits (both good and bad) that have formed over the course of years. We are resistant to change. In order to have the best chance of permanent behavior change, consider digging a little deeper and asking yourself who you are and what exactly you want to change.
If you want to live a healthier lifestyle, say to yourself, “I am the type of person who exercises 4 days a week and makes healthy eating choices”. Remember, this is the new you and every decision you make should be a reflection of your new identity. Creating this new identity and reminding yourself of your new identity will help you change habits that you’ve developed over the years.
So you’ve set a new identity for yourself, now what? Let’s take a look at the actual goals we are setting for ourselves. The key to reaching our goals is to make them small, manageable and most importantly, realistic.
The pitfall of most New Year’s resolutions is they are these grand, sweeping declarations that just aren’t realistic. For instance, if you’ve never run before, it’s just not realistic to expect that you will run 3-miles a day, 4 days a week. Start with small, manageable goals that you can realistically achieve. Maybe start with a goal like this, “I will run 10 minutes a day, 4 days a week”. Make the goal you set so simple and easy that you have no excuses! When you’re building a new habit, you have to make the habit simple to incorporate into your lifestyle so you have no excuses to skip them. Pretty soon, this simple task becomes your new habit!
If you’re looking to set a New Year’s resolution this coming January and you’ve failed in your previous attempts for betterment, give these tips a try and see what a difference they can make. After all, what good is a New Year’s resolution if it only lasts a couple weeks?