We have all been through the phase of “new year, new me” or “this is definitely my year, I am going to be consistent and prove to myself that I can do it this time.”
Most of the times, we end up keeping our resolutions for a month at best and then we just go back to our old routines. It’s not that we don’t believe we can do it, it’s just a million other things happen throughout the year, and we lose focus.
Here are 5 pieces of advice to help you do better this time round.
Let’s face it, just saying “I want to become fit this year” isn’t going to cut it. If it did, you probably wouldn’t be here reading this post. So a simple trick to reinforce that sentiment is to write things down. Because when you write things down in visible places, it helps you visualise your goals and constantly motivates you to achieve them.
The best place to stick your goals are on your door, next to the mirror in the bathroom and in front of your desk (if you actually use it). It works as a reminder, a physical reminder of the commitment you made. Better yet, trying adding the reason that made you make that decision. Adding a simple “because” at the end of your resolution …”because I want to be healthy” or “because I love it and it will make me happier” is a simple yet powerful trick that helps our brain take action.
It’s effortless to say by the end of this year I am going to become a martial arts’ master or become the next Da Vinci. It might sound cool to you and the people around you, but how plausible is it? Are you putting too much pressure on yourself?
Set realistic and specific goals, that you can achieve and feel good about. For example, finishing 5 paintings in a year. Or “I will play tennis twice a week” versus “I will play a different sport everyday”. This will relieve some of the pressure and so it is more likely to keep you going until you achieve what you set out to achieve. In business, people always talk about setting SMART objectives (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Timely) and our personal lives are no different as far as objectives go .
You finally went on your first yoga lesson, or you have been going to the gym for two weeks in a row. Treat yourself with something you enjoy, a nice meal, for example, or a new jacket or finally buy those snickers you’ve always wished for. It works best when you define your milestones and rewards before you even get started. Remember though to stick to it and not cheat yourself from a reward you set you would give yourself once a milestone is achieved. You deserve it, so treat yourself!
In doing this, not only you encourage yourself to keep going, but you get a sense of fulfilment when you achieve a milestone no matter how big or small it is.
A tough task just by the looks of it, but it’s essential to what you are trying to accomplish in the long run. Yes, sometimes life happens, but we should try and create a schedule which we can stick to. If not all the time, at least most of the time.
Creating a schedule enables you to have a routine and will keep you on track with cycling that extra mile or working harder on learning those new dance steps you were taught. We as humans need to have a schedule for one simple reason. All of us tend to forget, and unless something becomes a habit, then we neglect to do it. So make sure to make the time by allocating time to that specific task in advance.
Trying out a new activity is often a challenge but it’s also fun. You always push yourself to become better faster, meet new people and you get the chance to explore a hidden side of your personality you might not know you have.
Take the challenge this year and try to be consistent in one of the many things you will decide to change. Believe me trying out a new activity or a new hobby is something that will reward you later in ways you couldn’t anticipate.