Welcome to 2018, we have officially survived 2017 and put it behind us. We are eagerly planning, setting goals, making resolutions and promising that this year will be different, we are going to accomplish all the things we wanted to last year but everything got in the way. More often than not we get in our own way. Our attitude and mindset predisposes us to a specific outcome.
Is the glass half full or half empty? Your answer to that question says a lot about who you are, the attitude you have each day and your propensity for fulfilling your New Years’s resolutions.
New Year’s Resolutions
What is your New Year’s resolution? We start each new year with a breath of fresh air, we erase the doldrums, stress and anxiety of the holidays with a leap into a new/ improved us, a laundry list of self-improvements designed to whip us into perfection.
Essentially we set ourselves up to fail, we set unrealistic goals, we make promises to do things that we don’t really want to do but feel pressured to accommodate. The New Year begins with a bang, we sprint out of the gates, setting the world on fire, much like a sprinter however our burst is short-lived, we quickly run out of steam, we become overwhelmed and little by little revert back to our old habits, before you know it we are back in the same circumstance we were at the end of the previous year.
Sustained Momentum – Progressive Resolutions
What if we approached our New Year’s resolutions like we would a large, complex project at work or at home?
We create these grandiose plans that sound great, make us look motivated, make us feel good about a New Year, a new beginning. Most times however our plans are unrealistic and unsustainable.
What if we set more modest, incremental goals? Each week, each month reevaluate your progress and reestablish your goals. Successfully reaching your modest goals will build momentum, create a positive perception of your New Year’s resolutions and that momentum will catapult you forward to the next goal, the next step. Like a snowball rolling down hill you will gain momentum, picking up speed as you go.
Setting Goals – Baby Steps
How do you determine what is a realistic goal and what is an impossible goal? You have to be honest yourself, be realistic, be specific.
If your New Year’s resolution is to join the gym, there is a good chance that because of the vagueness of the goal, you will join and within a month’s time stop going. Why? Because you never reach your goal, you shoot for the moon but without a tangible, measurable goal you never achieve anything. You feel good when you join but from there on out it is a let down.
What happens if you break it into small, manageable, measurable goals? Let’s say you do not go to the gym at all right now, is it honest or realistic to believe that all of a sudden you are going to go to the gym 5 days a week? You might do it the first week but chances are you will start to miss your goal early on and with each missed goal, negativity sets in, you become discouraged and your resolution slowly fades away.
Would a more realistic goal be 1 or 2 days a week to start with very specific items to accomplish while you are there? For example on week 1, I am going to the gym 2 days this week and I am going to walk on the treadmill for 30 minutes each time. My goal is more than what I am doing now, 2 days a week is realistic given I do not attend the gym at all. At the end of week 1 I will feel better because I have been to the gym twice and exercised for an hour. I reached my goal, I improved my lifestyle by exercising, I am feeling good. Week 2 keep the same goal or slightly increase it, maybe I go the gym 2 days and walk for 45 minutes or an hour each time.
With each completed goal, you build momentum, are inspired to take the next step and before you know it you will be going to the gym 5 days a week, working out and not even realize it. Your physical and mental health will skyrocket, you will be full of positive energy, eager to set and conquer the next goal.
We have a tendency to look back at the past, the things we didn’t do or achieve. By doing this we create negative thoughts, focusing on all the things that we didn’t accomplish.
Why should we look back? We aren’t going that way. When you are driving your car, do you constantly look behind you when you are moving forward, of course not you would run into something. Same thing applies in life, we cannot go back in time, we cannot change anything that has happened, so why do we focus or get caught up in the past? Keep your focus in front of you, set goals, achieve them, keep moving, keep growing, don’t worry about what has already happened, it will only do one thing, drag you down.
Always put yourself in a position to succeed, always focus on goals that are positive and attainable. Be honest and realistic with yourself. Setting yourself up to succeed puts you in a positive position, it is so much easier to stay positive and upbeat if you are succeeding, winning, conquering your goals. With each small goal attained, you propel yourself through the next goal and before you know it, you have achieved your ultimate goal. Be the best you, you can be, you will be satisfied, you will be happy, you will be positive and from there the positive momentum is unstoppable. Best wishes for an AMAZING 2018!!