New Year is a time when many of us get the urge to start fresh and make changes in our lives, but often we find it hard to stick to our new plans. Whatever your goals, here are a few tips to prevent these New Year resolutions being abandoned around February!
- Choose something you really want – don’t just follow the crowd when it comes to making your New Year’s resolutions. Asses your life and think about the thing that’s missing. What is it that would really make you happy? Some people find a coaching session helps them focus on a goal and plan for change.
- Don’t overreach – it’s good to be ambitious but if you try and set yourself too many resolutions you’re much more likely to fail. Try concentrating on one larger goal and then break that down into smaller, more manageable steps. Remember, these objectives work better when you use the SMART acronym – Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Trackable.
- Share your goals – it often helps to share your plan with someone else as this creates a feeling of accountability and can act as extra motivation in tough times. You could try a coach, mentor, online forums or friends and family.
- Practice self-control – self-control and willpower actually improve the more you use them. Whether you’re trying to lose weight or stop smoking, the more you resist the easier it should become. Be mindful of your behaviour and recognise any triggers or self-defeating behaviours.
- Motivate & plan – keep yourself motivated with visual reminders of your goal. Plan ahead and try to avoid any temptation from your environment so you won’t have to battle with it later. Don’t set yourself up for failure.
- Track your progress – with any goal it really helps to track your progress in a calendar, tracker or diary. However you monitor your progress, give yourself little rewards when you do well and don’t be too hard on yourself if you have a setback. Forgive yourself, lift your spirits and try again.
- Seek help if needed – many people find they need a little extra help to stick to their new year’s resolutions. Weight loss groups, hypnotherapy for smoking, life coaches or a friend with similar goals are all good options. Don’t be afraid to ask for help.
- Enjoy the journey – see your resolution as a journey rather than a result. It probably won’t happen overnight so you may as well enjoy the ride. To make real changes in your life you need time to learn new habits and behaviours.
What are your goals for 2016? Whatever New Year resolutions you’ve set yourself good luck and don’t give up!