Let me ask you a couple of quick questions.
- What New Year’s Resolutions did you make last year?
- Did you achieve them?
Now if you answered ‘Yes’ to question 2, you probably already know how to successfully make changes in your life. But for many of us it can be a real puzzle.
We start off the new year with a whole list (mistake number 1) of things we want to achieve, and then 7 days in we’ve already forgotten half of what we wanted to change (mistake number 2) and so we give up, thinking perhaps we can’t change or the effort isn’t worth the reward (mistake number 3).
So if this is your experience read on, because you can achieve any goal you want if you follow these 3 simple steps:
- If, like me, you find the New Year an exciting time, thinking about all the things you could accomplish in the upcoming months, you might be tempted to make a whole list of things you want to change. The problem with that is you don’t focus on any of them. They were just wishes rather that tangible goals. Make that list if you want to, then take the first and most important goal, and focus on that one thing. So if it’s “getting to the gym 3 times a week”, put 3 dates in your diary to block out the time, and go and do something enjoyable at the gym so that you have fun while you’re there. This means you’ll not only feel better, but want to go back again. Over time you can make the sessions more demanding so you build your fitness, but start easy.
- Having multiple things we want to change at once robs us of the focus that I mentioned previously. But what if your resolution is a big, life changing one? Take the example of losing a large amount of weight, say 3, 4 or even 5 stone? This can seem like an overwhelming challenge and keeping on track when progress appears to be slow can become demoralising, especially if you encounter set backs along the way. So with a big goal such as that, break it up into smaller ones eg I will lose 7 lbs by the end of January. This seems so much more achievable, and when you’ve done it you’ll feel good about yourself and you can then set your goal for the next month (with increased confidence that you both can and will achieve it).
- We can all make changes and the rewards will far outweigh the effort of instilling the new behaviour. The brain loves to achieve. Rather than giving up, change the way you’re approaching your resolutions. Make it fun, break it down into achievable portions, and adapt your routines if you need to.
Remember, change is the only constant in life, and small daily changes lead to lasting results, by creating new patterns to follow.
If you need more help, ask a friend to help out by holding you accountable for the things you want to do, because it’s also easy to not do them. Or consider working with a life coach.
Go to Grace Jones Coaching to see my special offer for February!