Every year we all make the same pledge and vow to stick to our New Year’s resolutions. We create a long list, of what we feel at the time, are achievable resolutions to aspire to.
Lose weight, quit smoking, stop drinking, save money, no sugar, go to bed earlier.
However, studies have shown that despite all of our best efforts and good intentions, a quarter of all New Year’s resolutions are abandoned in the first week of the New Year.
So what exactly is the key to setting New Year’s resolutions that are sustainable and achievable without completely losing our stamina to complete them throughout the year?
Create a vision and a plan of the journey, not just the end result.
Rome wasn’t built in a day, and often in many cases, New Year’s resolutions are striving to resolve deep issues that require a lot of attention, planning and energy.
It is easy to simply say to yourself “I will lose weight this year,” but if you fail to create steps and smaller goals to get yourself there, chances are you will give up.
For example: If your New Year’s resolution is to lose weight, instead of just imagining yourself in a new bikini on a tropical island, you need to create a plan to get yourself to that island.
Research a meal plan, sign up to a gym, watch youtube videos of workout routines. Immerse yourself with your resolution and understand what you need to do to succeed.
If you fail to plan, you plan to fail. So make sure to create a vision and a plan to success.
This also links in with temptations in our everyday life or triggers. If you have failed to plan your journey, then you have not taken into account what may tempt you to give up.
Understand your triggers and how you can combat them
We have all been there; there is no shame. Day 3 of your return to work and you are going great with your New Year’s resolution of No Sugar. You haven’t touched a piece of chocolate in almost a week, and you have proudly proclaimed “No Sugar” to your barista every morning this week.
However, Friday rolls around, and sure enough, you have been invited to a night out with your work mates. This means cocktails, desserts and possibly a midnight run to Maccas.
Before you head out on Friday, you need to understand that this is a trigger. You Already know that you will be tempted to have just one, okay maybe two, all right fine, three, long island ice teas.
Once you spot a trigger either remove yourself from that trigger: in this instance, declining a night out, or creating a resolution to that problem: telling your workmates that you are trying to lose weight or having a drink that contains less sugar.
Triggers are a fact of life; you just need to know how to deal with them.
When you have acknowledged and planned for your triggers, you can then begin to spot smaller things in your everyday life that can be easily swapped or changed which works towards your goal.
Notice your daily habits and seek change to the ones that are hindering your success.
This step could be the easiest to complete and it is because we all know when we are doing something that perhaps could hinder our success or our goals. Moreover, it really is simple to overcome this by finding an alternative.
When looking at a weight loss resolution, one huge change you could vow to make is to have no sugar (or no excess bad sugars). Instead of drinking a soft drink, opt for a green tea.
Small changes to your lifestyle add up (and green tea will give you more energy than that sugar-laden soft drink anyways!)
Plan, understand and change and you will be on the road to successful New Year’s resolutions in no time!
Happy New Year!