Everyone knows the running joke of how gym memberships hit a record high in January, only to thin back out by February. Often it just feels like New Year’s resolutions are meant to be broken. But, setting goals for yourself is healthy, especially when they entail positive changes.
The holidays are barely over, and you’re probably already thinking about how 2019 can be better than this year. Often, we fall short of realizing that the problem isn’t that we’re incapable of sticking to our resolutions.
However, in actuality, the problem is that we don’t set ones that are actionable and achievable. It’s almost like we’re setting ourselves up for failure right from the start.
So, before 2019 is in full session, set yourself up for the best chance of success by making better resolutions you can see through. Follow these tips to make sure 2019’s resolutions will stick all the way through 2020!
Start small and then work your way up:
Nothing happens overnight, so you really shouldn’t expect things to come easy. One way to tackle a seemingly firm resolution is to draw out an upside-down pyramid; the pinnacle becomes the foundation as structurally unsound as it may seem.
Specify your goals as much as possible:
Going big or going home is not the answer, it’s most important when trying to accomplish your goals to break them down to their very core. One way I like to execute this is by also using another visual strategy, word mapping. For instance, if a new year resolution of yours is weight loss, an apt association would be the gym and to get even more specific, a 10-minute workout at home.
Write down your goals and put them somewhere visible:
Nothing gets a person’s attention more than bright colors, and even the conventional yellow legal pad paper will work just fine against a white wall as it does for me. You can create visual cues that work for you from posting sticky notes to your bedroom or bathroom mirrors to drawing yourself accomplishing your goals (stick figures count, no need to be an artist) and tapping them to your fridge a la childhood. You can get as creative as you like with your visual reminders, go wild, but get it done!
Focus on one thing at a time:
Close all those tabs, you heard me, multitasking is not your friend it damages your brain and your effectiveness. Pick one goal and stick to it until getting to your others. If you struggle with focus, get rid of the distractions by turning off your phone, disabling the WiFi (streaming, online shopping, and YouTube video be gone), or changing your work environment. Another method that can help you focus is by giving yourself an allotted time and setting that timer!
Surround yourself with a support system:
Make your resolutions public; your friends and family want you to succeed, don’t be afraid to need others to help. I keep myself accountable by asking others to hold me responsible for deadlines or send me reminders. If you thrive in collaborative settings, finding a group of people that share your goal will help keep you motivated. For instance, taking a class or joining a meetup group in your city is a productive choice that not only promises structure but friends as well!
Celebrate the small victories:
In the words of Tom Haverford, “Treat Yo Self!” Define reward learning and relate to goal achieving, state the founder of reward learning and show how beneficial it is to be kinder to yourself. Reward learning is the concept of that a behavior is modified when an incentive is present. For example, you could reward yourself to a spa day if you maintain your workout routine for two weeks straight.
Don’t let failure get you down:
Failure and success are the dynamic duos: one cannot exist without the other. Just because you failed to stick to your goal for a week or a month, doesn’t mean you should give up on it altogether. Have the courage to pick yourself up when you fall; nothing worthwhile comes easy.
Most importantly, believe in yourself:
For all my Potterheads, “working hard is important. But, there’s something that matters even more; Believing in yourself.” As cheesy as it might sounds, by believing in yourself, you’re already halfway to achieving your goal. With self-confidence, you have the power to accomplish anything you set your mind to doing.