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Here’s the scenario: Christmas is over. The tree is still up. The house is a disaster after all the holiday fun. You are exhausted. The kids have been out of school for a week and are bored. And….it’s New Years Eve.
You head to a New Year’s Eve party or stay in your nice quiet (yet messy) home, and you are supposed to feel renewed and ready for the new year to begin. I don’t know about you, but all I can think about it trying to figure out how to stay in bed for an entire day!
Why I don’t like ‘New Year’s Resolutions’
Yep, I said it. I don’t like New Years Resolutions.
The start of a new year is a great time to reflect on what you accomplished (or didn’t accomplish) in the previous year. It’s also an ideal time to think about goals for yourself, define ways to improve yourself, and work on a plan to get them done.
However, the idea behind New Year’s Resolutions is that you need to start implementing those changes on January 1st.
The reality is, even though New Years Resolutions are intended to be for the year, we are lucky if we last a month. It’s tough to ask ourselves to think that one day in the year holds the power to helping us achieve a goal. Most people are not going to change something (quit smoking, start a new diet, etc.), until they are ready. It’s silly to think that everyone should be ready on January 1st.
What we should do instead of New Year’s Resolutions
The end of a year, and the beginning of another, is the perfect time to take a good look at ourselves and make some decisions about what we would like to do differently. When reflections turn into actions, we start to make progress. These actions will only be successful if we are motivated. So, create a list, prioritize and plan!
Make sure that you don’t have too many on your list; 3-5 is good. Once you have your list, prioritize them based on what you would like to start accomplishing first, second, etc. and start a plan.
5 Tips to ‘New Years Resolution’ Success
Here are some simple guidelines to creating your plan:
- Start with the goal that is easiest or quickest to achieve. Getting a quick ‘win’ will make you feel accomplished and motivate you to continue down your list.
- Start goals early in the year that will take a while to accomplish (like weight-loss), but remember, it doesn’t have to be on January 1st!
- Give yourself some time to let these first two changes set in before you implement a new one. For instance, you could plan to start goal #3 in March or April.
- Identify what success is for each goal. For instance, if losing weight is on your list, identify how many pounds would be successful to you. (Keep in mind everyone’s idea of success is going to be different)
- Write it down! In any fashion you choose – electronic, on paper, posted to the mirror in your bathroom – whatever works for you! Putting it in writing will make it ‘real’ and help you to achieve it.
The key to successful ‘New Year’s Resolutions’ is to not expect yourself to take on a lot of changes at one time. Space it out and prepare yourself for success. By identifying your goals at the beginning of the year, but giving yourself a few weeks/months to start those changes, you are giving yourself an opportunity to adjust to change and giving yourself a better chance at success!
What are your New Years Resolutions for 2018???