How To Make New Year’s Resolutions Last!

It’s January 2020, and many of us are experiencing that fresh, renewed feeling  of a new year! We are filled with exciting expectations of new hopes and the desire to reach new horizons. We are ignited with fresh ideas and vision that will shape the year ahead.

For some, setting New Year’s Resolutions requires a dose of courage, especially if you have fallen off the bandwagon. Others might find it easy to transition  into new goals if they have achieved previous resolutions. Whichever side of the spectrum you may find yourself, one thing is sure, you will need to gather up the will power for a brand new start! If we are honest with ourselves, a large number of our past resolutions were probably broken in a matter of weeks or even days!

So how do we go about setting sustainable and meaningful New Year’s resolutions?

Surprisingly, it’s not as hard as you think. There are many ways to set yourself on a successful path.


Here are a few tips to help you:


Keep It Simple!


Don’t try to do an overhaul of your entire lifestyle all at once. This will only lead to disappointment and guilt that will kill your momentum! In fact, making small changes in your lives, over time will produce great results.  It’s important to remember that realistic goals are not achieved at once. The most sustainable approached would be to focus on one or two of your most important goals.


Decisions, Decisions!


You may be wondering what to choose? Well, you might like to zone in on those things that will have the most significant impact on your happiness, health and personal fulfilment. For example, giving up junk food will obviously improve your health, but it will also give you a sense of pride and will make you happy (but perhaps not immediately!)


Break Down Goals And Have A Time Frame


Set some time to break down your goals into manageable chunks. This is probably the most critical ingredient for success! The more planning you do,  the better direction you have to achieve your goals. Set clear, realistic goals such as losing 5 kgs in the next 3 months, saving R1000 a month for one year, or going for a run once a week. Then, decide exactly how you will make this happen! Write out an action plan.

Include a time-frame for motivation. It will be your barometer for success and will help you assess your short-term progress towards the ultimate long-term goal. Get a calendar or diary so you can plan your actions for the coming weeks or months, and decide when and how often you want to evaluate your progress.


Keep Reminders


Having made a note of your time-frame, you will have a physical reminder of what you’re aiming for. If you are a visual person, keep pictures and illustrations around you that inspire and motivate you to achieve your goals. It is also beneficial to have a trustworthy accountability partner who will check in on you from time to time. This will give you that extra sometimes uncomfortable push that you need!


Take Charge and Be Resilient!


Realise that these achievements are under your control – other people can advise and support you, but it’s your actions which need to change to see the results you want. Having a strong sense of responsibility for your life is necessary to stick with your plans.

Remember that at times you will slip-up, and that’s okay!  You must not let setbacks become an excuse to give up. When it happens, you will need to draw on your inner resilience and strength. Reward yourself for progress and allow for moments of grace when you fall short, this will help keep a rhythm of momentum going.

Feel proud of your past achievements and celebrate small victories, don’t become critical of yourself. People with higher self-esteem and confidence are in a much better position to succeed, so immediately forgive yourself and say “I’m starting again now!”

There’s no better gift than the present, so why not carve out an hour or 2 of your day to set some sustainable resolutions that will impact your life in a real and meaningful way!


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