At the beginning of every year, it seems like everyone is eager to make some big life changes. It also seems like everyone has abandoned those New Year’s resolutions before the end of January, and even then, those who stick to them likely won’t make it to the end of the year. Think about it, the gym parking lot is always the busiest during the first two weeks of the year.
This study surveyed 800 million Americans and found that most resolutions are completely abandoned by January 19. Why is it so hard to fulfill our resolutions and how can we ensure success the next time we decide to make some of those major life changes? Let’s look at some ways to ease the process.
Understand why you need a resolution.
One of the biggest reasons that people ditch their resolutions so early in the year is that they never really understood why they wanted to have them in the first place. Most people make a New Year’s resolution simply because that’s what other people do (an estimated one third of all Americans to be exact), but is that really a good reason to do it? And more importantly, will it keep you motivated when the going gets tough?
The truth is, we are much more willing to stick to something when we have a good reason to want it. Maybe your resolution is to lose weight and eat healthier because your blood pressure has been consistently high. That can be a difficult resolution to make, but if you have concluded that you want that change, and that conclusion is genuine, then you will have more reason to stay diligent.
If you made that decision because it’s what other people think would be good for you, you’re no longer doing it for yourself. Your motivation is likely to dissipate as soon as everyone else forgets about that resolution.
Find out what’s important to you, and what changes you want for your life. Then once you’ve found your why, the next step is to focus on the how.
Plan your resolution.
Dreaming big is a great way to achieve amazing things in life, but the problem that many run into is that they have no idea how to achieve those dreams. Maybe your resolution is to become better with finances. Break that big goal down into smaller ones. Make a monthly budget, look at how much you owe, look for areas in your life where you can save money, and then find additional income revenues.
By breaking your big goal into the four smaller steps above, it becomes much more digestible and easier to conquer than the vague goal it started out as. Need help scheduling out your steps? Try a free scheduling app like To Do List. like this.
Reevaluate when needed.
What we need from our resolutions often changes over time. That’s okay and it’s going to happen. Reevaluating what we really want to change about our current situation is a healthy way to avoid burnout, and specifically from dropping your resolution all together.
We will always have setbacks and road bumps along the way to make the journey more challenging. Remind yourself of why you set out to accomplish that goal and then push forward to figure out how to get there.
Your goals can evolve over time; what’s important is that you stay committed to something that will change your life for the better. Stick to that commitment, and you’ll achieve your resolutions in no time.
Is working toward your goals starting to tire you out? Try to prevent that with help from our blog, “Keys to Avoiding Burnout.”