The start of the year is when we tend to set new goals and make new years’ resolutions. Unfortunately, more often than not, people are likely to fall off the resolution wagon, some as early as February. They feel daunted or dissatisfied and they lack the motivation to see their goals through to completion. Studies show that up to 88 percent of resolutions failed due to a lack of planning and commitment to long-term change.
But when your New Years’ resolutions start to fade, how do you find the motivation to stick with them and stay resolute?
Unless you are clear and specific about where you want to get to in your business or personal life, chances are you are one of those 88% who fail at sticking with their goals. Below are five tips to committing to your resolutions and making them stick.
Don’t be too hard on yourself if you don’t reach your milestones. Refocus and soldier on.
MAKE IT MORE ‘REAL’
Being ambitious is good as it challenges us and stretches us to our limits, but don’t overpromise your objectives for the year. Pick only three or four goals (more can be too overwhelming) that matter and are relevant to you. Fostering change is sometimes difficult so you need to be realistic about the number of objectives and the timeframe in which you plan to complete them. Break your plans down into manageable targets rather than having one big goal to aim for.
Setting milestones will help you appreciate the incremental progress you’re making. The success you accomplish along the way by working on short-term targets can bring you closer to your end goal. Take time out each month to revisit your goals and tweak them if necessary. Try using a recurring reminder on your smartphone to prompt you to assess your progress versus your objectives. We need these ‘little wins’ to help us feel inspired and to keep us going.
DEVELOP A PLAN OF ACTION
To realise any goal – personal or business – you need to think about what actions will help you achieve success. Ask yourself: what actions do I need to do to complete this? And by when? Once identified, load your task list into your smartphone so you are constantly reminded. Getting clear about your tactics and distilling them into actions is half the battle, so make it happen.
SHARE YOUR GOALS
Make your resolutions known to people who will support you. When you share your goals, you’re subconsciously holding yourself accountable, especially if your goal has a direct impact on the people you are sharing it with – like your colleagues, peers, friends and family. Not only will they provide support and constructive feedback, but they can also serve as your sounding board and help boost your morale when staying on track becomes challenging. The more you engage the people around you, the more likely you are to complete the resolutions you’ve set for yourself.
DON’T LOSE PERSPECTIVE
Don’t be too harsh on yourself if you don’t meet your targets. People tend to give up when things get tough, but instead set your sights on the end goal and acknowledge what you have achieved so far. Start your day over with a renewed perspective. After all, you still have many months to make this year your best year ever.
Envisioning how you want to end this year is an encouraging process to undertake, as one sees the possibilities of accomplishing many great things. With a fresh perspective, resolutions are indeed an important tool that helps us make the most of the year.
Committing to your resolutions is just the first step to staying focussed. Never be disheartened when you falter, dust yourself off and keep going.