The start of year is one of the best times to start afresh and turn a new page, which explains why so many people make New Year’s resolutions.
Unfortunately, it’s easier to make them than to keep them and by the end of January, many of us have abandoned our resolve and settled back into our old ways.
In fact, researchers at the University of Scranton found that while 77 per cent of people who committed to a New Year’s resolution stuck to it for at least a week, only eight per cent of people who make New Year’s resolutions will actually fulfil those goals in a timely fashion – if ever.
Whether it’s a lack of motivation, lack of resources or we simply lose interest, it’s time to start off with a clean slate and finish what we started.
As you kick off the New Year full of positivity and determination, arm yourself with these tips for keeping your resolutions and secure yourself a spot in that precious 8 per cent.
Work on one resolution at a time
Unhealthy habits develop over time. After all, if it’s going to take 66 days (according to The Huffington Post) to form a habit, it’ll probably take just as much time, if not longer, to shed one.
Don’t get overwhelmed and think you have to re-examine everything in your life. Instead, focus on changing one thing at a time.
So be patient, and cut yourself some slack. Rome wasn’t built in a day.
The more specific your resolutions, the more attainable they will seem, and the more accountable you’ll be to yourself.
So instead of saying you want to lose weight, for example, it’ll be better to say “I’ll go to the gym at least twice a week.” Now it is more concrete and measurable.
Hold yourself accountable to your goals
Make yourself accountable to with a written or verbal promise to people you don’t wish to disappoint. That will push you to slog through any tough spots.
You can harness the power of social media and make a Facebook page dedicated to your goals, or seek like-minded individuals with similar goals online.
You can also make a less public promise to your significant other, family members or friends.
As the old adage goes, “If you do not plan, you plan to fail,” planning is a salient component of achieving any goal.
If you work without a plan, you may quickly find yourself giving up any time you face any sort of obstacle.
You can start by jotting down your goal, making a list of the steps you will to achieve that goal, and noting down any possible obstacles that might get in your way and what you will do to overcome them.
Celebrate small victories
Once you’ve set up smaller and more achievable goals, make specific plans to celebrate every time you accomplish one.
This will help you to stay motivated to power on.
The reward could be anything – a spa day, or a night of binge watching your favourite Netflix series.
Just make sure your treat isn’t an excuse for you to slip back into an old habit.