As the New Year fast approaches, you might be starting to make big, ambitious plans for how to make the new year your best year yet. But you might also be aware that less than 10% of people feel like they successfully achieved their New Year’s resolutions.
While the new year is always a great opportunity to start fresh, a resolution without a plan is really just a wish. So, how do you set yourself up for success? Check out these simple tips to help you set achievable goals that will help change your life for the better (and say goodbye to bad habits for good).
6 Tips For Sticking To Your Goals
Understand why you failed in the past
While looking at past failures might not be as fun as setting new goals, it can also be the most powerful step you take. There are so many reasons why people fail to meet their New Year's Resolutions. But one of the most common is simply having too many goals with no concrete plans. And that can mean quickly losing your drive.
Once the excitement of the new year wears off, if you don’t have a plan, you’re likely to lose your motivation pretty quickly. That’s why the majority of resolution setters give up within weeks and then go on to repeat the same resolutions year after year.
If your passed resolutions were unrealistic and excessively difficult to achieve, you likely lost your drive. If your resolutions were too simple, then you may have given up due to boredom. Be realistic in your expectations. Really think about what you need to become the best version of yourself.
Need a little help? These great journal prompts will help you envision your dream life!
Decide what’s holding you back in life
Now it’s time to be honest with yourself. What is holding you back from becoming who you want to be in this life? By definition, a resolution is the simple act of resolving a problem. So, what’s your “problem”? What’s keeping you stuck in life?
Remember, you don’t need to make big bold moves to change your life. You can start with baby steps towards your goals. Even baby steps can make lasting changes. If you can’t figure out what you truly need, then sit down and decide what’s working for you, and what’s not working for you. What area in your life do you need to refocus your energy towards?
Set achievable resolutions
Now that you’ve laid the groundwork, it’s time to set resolutions that are actually achievable. And the best way to do that is by being as specific as possible with your goals.
If you want to save money, determine how much money you want to save. If you want to lose weight, be honest about what’s a realistic amount. Trying to eat healthier? Be specific about what that looks like to you.
Next, decide if your goals are attainable in a reasonable amount of time. If not, find ways you can break them down into smaller, more realistic goals. Remember, to resolve your problem you need to change the way you think, break down barriers, and create new habits. So, your resolutions should be reasonable and inline with what you truly want — not just what you think you “should” do.
Create a realistic plan of action
Whatever your resolutions are, without a plan, your chances of success are limited. A plan of action holds you accountable, provides clear guidance, and helps you complete each step required to follow through with your goal.
Your plan should take each of your goals or resolutions and break them down into the smallest possible steps. Steps that you can take every day with measurable outcomes every week and/or month to help you make progress throughout the year.
When creating the plan, make sure every step in the goal is specific, measurable, realistic, and attainable within a reasonable amount of time. This gives your plan structure and helps motivate you to reach your New Year's resolutions.
Find a support system
Finding a support network can make all the difference in achieving your goals. Look for the people in your life who treat you with respect, kindness, and have your best interests at heart. This might be family, close friends, or even work colleagues who will be there to cheer you on, celebrate your wins, and support you on your journey.
A solid support system not only helps you stay motivated and accountable, but also helps you achieve your goals. Better yet, find a friend who’s motivated to achieve the same goal. The buddy system works and can make attaining your goal a lot more fun. Support comes in many forms, and the right support can be game-changing.
Take good care of yourself
You’re more likely to achieve your goals when you feel healthy and vibrant. Because when you feel good, you do good. Good self care habits can help you feel vibrant and energized enough to keep working toward your goals.
Here are a few tips to care for your body and mind while working toward your goals:
- Strive for seven to eight hours of quality sleep each night and try to keep the same sleep schedule even on weekends.
- Stay active. Those crisp, short days of winter can often put your body and spirit in a funk. But to increase your energy level, reduce stress, manage weight, and improve your ability to do everyday activities, you need to move your body!
- Cut back on sugar and processed foods. Add nutrients to your diet that give you energy and keep your brain sharp. Because fueling your body right is the ultimate key to success.
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*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.