Most of us find it easy to come up with a New Year resolution or two. We’re going to: get out more, lose some weight, decorate the home or flat or give something up like smoking or drinking. Most of us, however, find it a lot more difficult to carry those resolutions through once the clock ticks past midnight at the end of December.
Here are our quick tips for making those New Year resolutions stick.
Keep Your Resolution Focused
The reason so many of us fail at New Year resolutions is that we all too often make too many. Choose one thing you want to change and focus on that rather than spreading your energy across several challenges. The key is that you must really want to do it in the first place. If you’re going at something half-baked, then it’s more likely you’re going to get bored or lose impetus at some point, most probably within the first few weeks.
Choose Something Achievable
Not only does your resolution need to be focused, it should also be achievable. If you’re giving something up, like smoking for example, you need to put in measures that make your chances of success greater. That could include trying a substitute like an e-cigarette or avoiding situations such as going out for a drink that are likely to make you want to smoke. If you’re changing your diet, introducing healthy options gradually rather than all at once makes a lot more sense and will allow your body to get used to the change.
Set Small Goals That Build Into Something Big
Achievable, however, doesn’t mean you can’t do something fantastic – it’s all about how you break down that goal into bite size chunks that are easy to digest.
Let’s say that you want to make a big career move this year. It can seem daunting if you look at the whole thing – the key is to sit down and break down everything into things you can do right now and with less effort. The first might be reviewing your CV. Then you might like to get some career advice. Book onto some courses. All these are easily done, each step moves you closer to your greater goal.
The same can be said if you want to get fit in the New Year. You won’t run a marathon immediately. You can, however, start with a walk around the block and gradually increase that everyday until your fitness improves. Breaking down things gives you easy wins and that improves your motivation and makes it much more likely that you’ll achieve those goals.
Take Advantage of Support
Another reason we can fail to keep a New Year resolution is we don’t take advantage of the support that’s around us. Whether it’s from friends and family or visiting online or local resources, there’s plenty of help, you just need to ask and accept it. Getting support will help you see the positive side of what you’re trying to do and will mean you have a better chance of succeeding – it’s great for those times when you’re finding it most difficult, especially when you’re giving up something like smoking or trying to eat healthier.
Forget About Perfection
Finally, we can get downhearted when things don’t go exactly as planned. Be realistic and accept that you’re going to fail or at least stumble along the way. You snack on that chocolate bar or you sneak that crafty cigarette off a work colleague when the stress in the office gets too much. We tend to use these failures as an excuse to give up entirely. Don’t be phased by backward steps, simply reset everything and keep going with your resolution.