Sticking with those New Year’s Resolutions
So you’ve committed to a single goal for a happier, healthier, more balanced you in this New Year . That goal is in alignment with your true core values. You’ve even created three specific and measurable action steps to help you reach your objective. But at this point, you’re falling short. Don’t give up! There are very specific and effective things you can do to get right back on track.
- First, stop beating yourself up. Negativity is not going to motivate you to change your behavior. Instead, focus on what you’ve done right. Even if it was only working on your original action steps for a few days, congratulate yourself. Celebrating even the smallest progress can inspire you to do more.
- In that spirit, take a moment to jot down at least a dozen things you accomplished through the years. Reflecting on past successes reminds you that you’ve achieved goals before, and you can certainly do it again.
- When you find it impossible to completely change a non-beneficial behavior cold turkey, realize that a “better than” choice is a legitimate step in the right direction. For instance, if you resolved to become a vegetarian this year but you’re craving meat, instead of making it the main part of a meal, including a small amount of chicken in a kale salad is “better than” eating a steak.
- Watch a funny movie. Pet a dog. Play with a child. Sing along with your favorite songs. When you’re laughing and in a good mood, your willpower soars. Taking a moment to boost your spirits pays off big when you’re tackling a goal.
- Spend time with people you care about. Supportive friends can listen, encourage and inspire you to stick with it. Knowing others respect and believe in you might be just the incentive you require to get back in gear.
- You’ve got to move it, move it. Even a 10-minute walk energizes and motivates you. When you feel stuck, get up and go to really get going.
- Watch your language. Thinking, “I’ll never reach my goal” is the quickest way to doom your resolution to failure. Eliminate words like “want,” “try,” “never” and “always” from your vocabulary, and see how quickly you start resonating to positive alternatives like “will, am” and “choose” that put you back in the driver’s seat.
- Finally, express gratitude. Scientific research has proven that keeping a gratitude journal has a measurable impact on the writer’s determination, attention, enthusiasm, and energy level. When a person is mindfully choosing to be grateful, they cannot simultaneously be focusing on anything negative. Cultivating that “attitude of gratitude” can be just what you need to keep your eyes on the prize, and finally achieve that goal.
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