Do you ever make new years resolutions anymore? If you do make them, have you ever actually stuck to them?
I don’t know about you, but for me, there is something exciting about starting a new year. I always feel as if the mistakes of the past year can all be forgotten as we step into the beginnings of a new year. I open my brand new blank year planner and my heart smiles as I start to make plans and imagine how wonderful the new year will be. This excitement and enthusiasm can lead to lot’s of new years resolutions being made, but unfortunately, those resolutions are often forgotten within a few weeks of the new year starting.
I must admit that in the past I would make a huge list of new years resolutions and every year I would have given up on all of them by February! I started to wonder why I even bothered making any if I was going to fail them all. I knew that I needed to do something so I decided to look into why this was happening and make a new plan that I would be able to follow and achieve some success.
Here is my plan on making new year resolutions that you can actually stick to.
Decide on no more then three each year.
I always end up with a list of at least ten things that I want to do or change and it is just too many! I get overwhelmed before I’ve even started and I do not know where to begin. If you have a lot of things that you want to change, you really need to pick out the three that you want the most and forget the rest until you have achieved the original three.
Make them realistic.
You need to be realistic in your goals as there is a big difference between a goal and a dream. If you choose to loose 10 stones in weight to make you a size 0 or to make your first million then you are basically setting yourself up to fail. You need to be honest with yourself and what you can realistically achieve in a year.
You need to set clear goals. In the past I would write very general resolutions such as ‘to loose weight’. The problem with this is that there is no way of knowing when I have achieved the goal. You need to be very specific when writing your resolutions and you should give yourself a time frame to achieve each goal as that will make it seem much more real and achievable. So, going back to the weight example, it would be much better to write something like ‘to loose 2 stone by August 1st and then maintain that loss for the rest of the year.’
You then need to plan how you will do this. So carrying on the weight loss resolution you may plan to join a gym. If you plan this you will then need to plan out exactly when you will be able to go to the gym to exercise and write it in your diary or planner just as you would an appointment at the doctors. You may choose to join a slimming class. Again, write in your diary a 30 minute session for next week to give you the time to find out which class you would like to attend and where your nearest class is. You then need to write in your diary that you are going to the class.
When you have planned out your three goals, you can clearly see what needs to be done and when so it is now much more easier to achieve your goals. You may find that you do not have enough time to do all three so now is the time to drop one if you need to until you have more time and less to do.
Ok, so you have your resolutions written. You have been realistic and specific and you have a plan in front of you telling you exactly when and what to do in order to achieve the goals. All you need to do now is actually do it! You could have the best plan in the entire world but if all you ever do is plan and make lists without ever following them through, you will never get anywhere. Now you must commit to all the hard work you have spent planning and do those actions that you have planned.
Now you need to keep an eye on those goals, so every 6 weeks or so spend a few minutes thinking about how you have been getting on. Have you been following your plan? Are you happy with your progress so far? If you are happy and can see that everything is going well, then carry on as you are. However, as life is never predictable and we as people are constantly changing you may find yourself deciding that the goal and or the plan that you originally set for yourself is not working. If that is the case you need to make a new plan that fits better with you and your life.