Ok, you are almost a month into 2021! Are you still sticking to those New Year’s resolutions that you’ve set for yourself? Maybe you want to exercise more, increase your income, eat better, or even improve your mental health? Whatever those goals may be, it seems that most of us that do set them in the beginning of the year, can’t keep them. Also, many of us loose the motivation to stick with them throughout the year. As the days go by, we even can rationalize and make up stories in our head as to why we can’t or don’t want to accomplish the very goal we set for ourselves just a couple of months ago.
In fact, research shows that up to 80- percent of New Year’s resolutions fail by the second week of February, according to U.S. News & World Report. All across the country gyms see a spike in memberships but as the weeks go by attendance continues to drop. Let’s face it— change is hard. However, it surely doesn’t have to be. With proper techniques and strategies, you can indeed rewire your brain, stick with your goals, and accomplish them. Here is one strategy that lifted a lot of weight off of my shoulders every New Year. Instead of thinking of specific goals from the very beginning, give yourself time to do some self-reflection of the past year.
For example, take a look back in 2020 and think about what went right and what went wrong. Think about your highest highs and your lowest lows. Think about the self-limiting beliefs and the repetitive negative thoughts that seemed to arise through the year that might be inhibiting your success. Think about your greatest fears and worries. Last but not least, think about how your life might look like if you were able to overcome many of the negative emotions or disappointments you’ve experienced throughout 2020. From this point, you’ve now done some self- reflection so you can understand why it might be hard to tackle certain goals. In addition, you’ve given yourself a bird’s eye view of your past, which can help lead you towards a better future.
Understanding your life backwards provides you with a great opportunity to effectively create a future that is more meaningful to you. Thus, allowing you to define meaningful goals that align to what you really want in life. For example, many us may want to exercise more but we don’t necessarily go any deeper than that. Meaning the goal has no personal value or weight to allow you to continue in the pursuit. Now what you could say is, I want to exercise more to increase my vitality and energy so I can be a better husband, mother or friend. These are goals that will stick because they mean something to you.
Three tips to help you keep your New Year’s Resolution:
Set goals that truly matter to you and know your why for doing them— This is by far the most important. If you don’t really know why you want to accomplish the goal, then percentages of accomplishing it significantly decrease. Dig deep to understand why you want to stick to your resolutions. What will it offer you? Who will it affect? How different would your life be?
Read them everyday— Many times, we forget about our resolutions. Keep a list of your goals near your bed or even posted in the bathroom mirror so you can remind yourself of where you are headed and why. This builds new neurological pathways in your brain each time you read them over and over again making it that much easier for you to start and continue your goals.
Have an accountability partner—
Studies show that having someone in your life that is aware of your goals significantly increase your chances of accomplishing them. Tell a close friend or family member about your desires. They might want to help but also this keeps you honest with yourself, so you don’t create excuses for not accomplish something deep in your heart that you really want.
Positively Caviar, Inc. (PCI) is a grassroots nonprofit organization focused on instilling mental resilience by way of positive thinking and optimism. Each month, a member of their Nucleus Team features a column focused on mental and physical health tips, scientific studies, nutrition facts and stories that are positive in nature to support a positive and healthy lifestyle. To learn more about how you can support, volunteer, or donate to Positively Caviar, Inc. visit: positivelycaviar.com.