If you have set a New Year Resolution then there’s is a good chance that you are either really struggling to stick to it right now or you have given up completely. This doesn’t mean that New Year Resolutions don’t work, it is that the vast majority of people don’t know HOW to make them work.
Let’s take a quick look at what happens.
How Most People Make a New Year Resolution
In December you have all of the joy/stress of Christmas to think about and as you start to get closer to that day you have done most of your present buying and you start to think a little more towards New Year. What you will be doing and that all important New Year Resolution. So you start to take a look at what is going on with you that you would like to change (mostly weight related or stopping smoking) and you say to yourself that on the 1st of January you shall no longer do x. Whatever x may be that you don’t want to do anymore you will no longer do it from that day on. That is your New Year Resolution.
So what do you do in the meantime?
You do x like there is no tomorrow. You carry on doing that thing that you claim to be unhappy about and even more so. You smoke a little more because you’ll be giving up soon. You eat all of the chocolates in the house to make sure that there are none left for New Year and then you go and buy extra from the shop because you don’t want the shop to have any stock either.
If you really wanted to do it that much don’t you think that you would have started working on it before New Year’s Day? Of course you would.
If it really meant that much to you don’t you think that you would have made a plan to support you before New Year’s Day? Of course you would.
If it really meant that much to you don’t you think that you would have looked at who can help you, either friends of getting a professional to help you before New Year’s Day? Of course you would.
Did you? NO
How To Make A New Year Resolution
First of all, watch this video. In it you will see why I have set a New Year Resolution that I am going to fail over 100 times. I recorded this as a once only filming and showed it to you to show you that it’s OK not to get things 100% right. All that your mistakes show you are ways that you can improve and become a better version of you. Don’t try to deal with all of them at once though. That just leads to overwhelm. Simply pick one and work on that until you have it running how you want it to be and then look at what else you would like to improve. You will find that by improving one area of your life you are going to improve in other ways too. Some of the other mistakes you used to make before you started might also disappear.
So you are getting yourself ready to make your New Year Resolution or you have already started but you are struggling. What you need to do is make a plan. Yes, I know that something inside of you may be telling you that plans are boring or that they never work but that’s just resistance to change trying to mess with you. You need to decide exactly what you are going to do and how you are going to do it. What you are going to do on the good days and what you are going to do on the not so good days. The latter is the most important because they are the toughest.
You also need to be flexible in your plan. Now that doesn’t meant that sitting on the sofa watching Corrie and eating biscuits can become part of your weight loss plan (sorry to spoil that one for you). I means instead that you are fixed on your end result and you are flexible in your approach to how you get there. You may have decided that you were going to go running every day but after the first day you were hurting so much that you really couldn’t bare to face going out running again. How about this?
- changing the distance that you run
- looking at a warm up strategy
- looking at a cool down strategy
- maybe running twice a week at first
- practising yoga the day before and the day after you run to help your muscles deal with the strain
You could go on and on with different strategies, and you should as well. The flexibility of your options and your behaviour will decide whether you succeed or not.
Getting Help With your New Year Resolutions
Sometimes in life you just need that little bit of help. It might be that you need some information and so you need to buy a book. You might need to learn a new skill so you book yourself onto a course. You might need to work through some challenges with someone so you invest in yourself and hire some help. All of these things are very much worthwhile. Decide on what you need and go out there and get it!
Review your New Year Resolutions. Give yourself a set review period so that you can see what is working and what isn’t. Maybe you need to check in weekly at first because that is when your greatest learnings are taking place. Your greatest learnings always come from your greatest struggles. Having a great life coach to help you along the way and keep you accountable makes such a difference. Every great coach I know has a coach. Why? Because the understand the greater potential from that investment in themselves. Maybe it’s time to look at giving yourself that level of investment.
If you are working on some resolutions right now add a comment below. Feel free to share this on social media so that your friends and family can get a little help too. Most of all, have a great 2015!