If you’ve sung the mantra ‘new year, new you’ before, you’re probably well versed in the slippery slope of broken resolutions. The idea of the clock ticking to 12:01 to provide a fresh start is enticing, especially after all the frosting-covered sugar cookies and fancy holiday cocktails. In reality, over half of the new year’s resolutions set are forgotten by the time January 15th rolls around. We fail for 3 main reasons:
1. Our goals are not intentional,
2. Our resolutions are too vague, and
3. We don’t create an actual plan to succeed!
Below are three easy steps to identify, work towards, and achieve your 2019 new year resolutions helping you thrive through the end of the year.
Success Tip #1: Set resolutions for what YOU actually want to achieve.
Before you start any new task it’s important to consider your why. Take the time to sit down and journal your motivation on paper. Be inquisitive to discover why you want to set a new year’s resolution and ask yourself if it is intrinsically motivated. If not, maybe it’s not the right one for you this year. Creating a resolution that guides your life in the direction you want to go and has a deep meaning for you significantly increases your chance of follow through.
Being healthier is the top American new year‘s resolution, but there are so many other exciting things to do in a year. Below are a few of the most popular new year's resolutions with quick tricks to succeed.
Eating Well: Perhaps you have a food allergy or are noticing you’re feeling lethargic or have low energy. The winter is a great time to learn how to make foods you love at home or in a healthier way for you.
Fuel your body intentionally with the food you eat.
Focus on eating whole instead of processed can/frozen food.
Resist the urge to microwave your food because it zaps your nutrients.
Monitor your sugar intake.
Use an app like MyNetDiary to track your habits.
Remember that 70 calories from a cookie and 70 calories from an egg are completely different.
Avoid eating out but allow yourself a cheat day.
Getting In Shape: Throw out the scales and find a new way to measure your fitness.
Set goals that are not weight-based, like run a mile without stopping, do 100 squats or 10 push-ups in a row, workout x-number of times a week, train for a 5k, 10k or longer run, etc.
Use a measuring tape or track your BMI.
Track progress weekly instead of daily to avoid driving yourself crazy.
Attend the same workout class at the same time every week. Meet new workout buddies and have accountability with your instructor. These people will notice when you’re not there and help keep you motivated to go every week.
Reducing Your Stress: Take time every day to release stress in a healthy way and rebalance your adrenals.
Mindfully enjoy slow deep breaths to promote calm relaxation and more intentional reactions.
Download a free meditation app like Insight and use it.
Laugh even if you don’t feel like it.
Start journaling to identify the root of your stress, plan time for activities you love, determine how and when you self-sabotage, and create strategies to overcome obstacles.
Simplify your “to do” list, reframe your problems by looking at the big picture, practice gratitude and set healthy boundaries.
Respond with love and compassion not just for others but for yourself.
Relationships: Another top resolution is to spend more time with people that matter most or be more intentional about your time with others.
To meet new people, you have to get out of your house. The best places to meet people are at parks, gyms, sporting events, or in activity clubs.
If you are nervous to attend an event, visualize a positive outcome. Don’t be afraid to push beyond your comfort zone and step into a new conversation or say no to a gathering you don’t want to attend.
Engage in positive self talk and remind yourself of your strengths to ensure confidence.
Be inquisitive to get to know people. Focus on the person you’re talking to and be approachable by emanating a smile, making eye contact, and standing up straight to show others you are happy to converse.
Change Your Habits: Too much time spent on social media, watching tv, smoking or drinking? Would you like to pick up a skill in the new year?
If it’s hard to quit doing an activity you want to stop doing, replace it with a hobby you’d like to try. Refocus your time and energy on a skill you’ve been excited to try.
Create time limits for your evening television shows and set a timer for how long you can be on Instagram.
Delete or unsubscribe to apps, newsletters and social media personalities that are not adding value to your life.
Avoid catching the news.
Explore what interests you. Find a book category you like, borrow more books than you can read, and read more than one book at a time to fit your mood. There are plenty of resources that can enable you to learn things on your own these days. The hard part it taking the time to do so. Set reminders or designated times you’ll dedicate to your resolution.
Success Tip #2: Set specific goals.
Once you know your motivation and potential goals, you need to get specific. For example, if you want to learn a new language, what language do you want to learn? Do you want to be fluent, able to read or just converse? What are your checkpoints along the way and how will you know you are on-track? By creating specific measurable goals you enable yourself to track your progress and hold yourself accountable to your intentions.
Success Tip #3: Evaluate your progress.
There is no quicker way to defeat than setting a big goal that’s only to be evaluated once a year. The further you get from your intention setting date the easier it is to forget.
Instead, stay strong with Monday resolution check-ins. Fitness class attendance and “healthy” searches are 30% higher on Monday and Tuesday then Wednesday through Sunday proving we start off strong but often taper off throughout the week. If you allow Monday to be a consistent reset you will be much more likely to stay focused on accomplishing your goals for the year.
Next, set mini-goals to create a healthy sense of accomplishment and track your progress. Want to pick up a new hobby? Set a mini-goal to determine three different hobbies you will try this month to get a feel for what else is out there. When you feel positive and accomplished you are more likely to make more positive choices triggering the snowball effect in a good way!
If you’re sick of watching your resolutions slowly fade away in your rearview mirror, 2019 is your year. Don’t wait to making the changes you want to make next week, next month, or next year. Take the time to uncover the internal reason why you want to set a resolution. Set a goal that aligns with your why. Detail your plan of attack with your first Monday mini-goal to keep you on track. Then, each week, allow space for self-evaluation. Ask yourself how you’re doing and what needs to change? This year is your year to stick to new year resolutions and make 2019 your best year ever!