New Year resolutions are always very difficult to manage, you can start with the best of intentions, but things can be very difficult to stick to when life happens. Everything going on at home or work can sometimes push them to the back of your mind. Here we look at ways you can manage your expectations and create a resolution you can follow for 2019.
1. Make One Resolution – I would recommend creating just one resolution, something that is very important for you to get done in the coming year, whether that is running/exercising more, working harder or cutting down on the leftover chocolates from Christmas. There may be layers to the resolution, but if you have a single idea it will make the possibility of you fulfilling it much more likely.
2. Start Date is Crucial – Assigning a start date is essential, a new year resolution does not need to start on 00:01 of the 1st January, a resolution is what you want to have done at the end of the year and delaying the start and giving yourself time to plan everything will make it more likely of you getting what you imagined becoming a reality. Just make sure you do stick to the start date you decide. No excuses.
3. Commit to the Process – When you have chosen what YOU want to change in the coming year commit 100% to it, if you go into the resolution thinking that you will not achieve it you will only create negative thoughts and make it more likely that you move away from it.
4. Accept Failure – What this relates to is sometimes through our actions or things out of our control we might fall off the horse, this is completely understandable it is very difficult to stay disciplined for a full year. If you do fail don’t let that end your resolution just start back up again and continue to improve yourself.
5. Reward your Successes – Whether it be improving your diet or working towards a promotion it is important that throughout the year you provide yourself with motivation boosts, little rewards to keep yourself moving forward whether that be a family holiday, buying yourself something that you have had your eyes on or just a little bit of choccy, all of those will help your resolution stay resolute.
6. Write out your Resolution – You can have the greatest resolution in the world but if it stays only in your head and nowhere else it is likely to disappear and you’re more likely to struggle. I would recommend writing your resolution in places that you see daily, places such as bedside tables, the fridge & the back of the front door will all help to give you a mental cue of what you need to achieve. This is something that can be surprisingly effective and is a proven technique!
7. Be SMART – When setting goals or in this case resolutions, I always approach it the same way by using SMART goals help you keep track of how you are doing. This also helps you to set realistic goals in the first place:
S(pecific) – Make your goal about something that you believe you need to change don’t just make a goal with universal language, avoid saying ‘avoid alcohol’ and say, ‘I will only drink 2 glasses of wine per week’ for instance.
M(easurable) – How do you go about measuring success and failure? Using measurements helps you personally keep a track on your progress and helps you to realise what you might be doing wrong.
A(chievable) – Make it something that you can achieve in the time frame that you set, long term goals such as ‘gaining a promotion’ might not happen in one year so re-setting your goals to make it achievable we help keep your motivation high.
R(ealistic) – Similar to Achievable it is about making a resolution that you can actually achieve, if you have not been going to the gym before it is unlikely you will be able to be motivated to go 4-5 times per week so set yourself to go 2 times per week and work yourself up to 4-5 times per week.
T(ime Bound) – This is related to how long you want your resolution to last whether that be 6 months, a year or even longer. However, it is important with this that you review how successful your resolution has been before trying to continue with it.
And most importantly, good luck and keep being YOU!