Chances are, at some point of time in your life, you might have made a New Year’s resolution — and then failed to keep it. In the comSo ing year, break out of the cycle of resolving to make changes and then not following through.
The beginning of a new year is the best time to start afresh and turn a new page, which is probably why many people make New Year’s resolutions. The new year feels like a great opportunity to get rid of our bad habits and establish new rules that might help us grow emotionally, psychologically, socially, intellectually, or physically. But it is no lie that resolutions are much simpler to make than to keep, and by the middle of April, most of us have abandoned the new rules and settled back into old patterns. However, here are some psychological strategies that can help you stick to your resolutions more firmly.
Set realistic goals
The surest way of losing motivation to achieve your goal is to make unattainable goals. For instance, if you are resolving to quit eating your favourite food, you will inevitably fail to keep it. Therefore it is better to strive for a more attainable goal, such as avoiding it more often than never having it again.
Do not come up with your resolution on New Year’s Eve. Last-minute resolutions are usually based on your mindset from that particular day. Instead, plan it long before the arrival of December 31st.
List down all the “pros” and “cons.”
Maintaining a list on paper can keep your motivation strong. Develop this list over time. You may also ask others to contribute to the list. Keep it with you and refer to it every time you need the motivation to keep your resolve.
Avoid repeating past failures.
Do not make the exact resolution year after year. If you have made up your mind to reach for the same goals you have tried in the past, at least spend some time evaluating your previous outcomes and why they failed. Consider tweaking your resolution to make it more feasible.
Track your progress
It is essential to track each small success. Short-term goals are more easily achievable, and every small accomplishment will keep you motivated. Instead of setting a goal to lose 30 pounds, focus on losing 5 pounds first. Maintain a journal to track your progress and reward yourself after accomplishing your goal.
The annual ritual of setting resolutions does not have to be a yearly disappointment. Sometimes, choosing the right process and goal can help you achieve it.