Did you know that only 8% of people actually achieve their New Year goals? Why is it that our new year’s resolutions are destined to fail?
Read on to find out how you can achieve your goals and the live the life you want for 2017.
Why do our New Year’s resolutions fail?
The most common New Year goals include healthier living and life improvements, but within 6 months these goals have been completely given up or forgotten. So why are our New Year’s resolutions doomed to fail before they have even began?
New Year’s goals are too broad and unrealistic for us to be able achieve. They usually lack real meaning for the individual and are set without a plan in place on how we go about achieving them. Confidence and being ready for change is also a big factor. If you really aren’t ready to make those changes and you aren’t confident that you will get there, then you are likely to fall before you start.
How can we overcome these challenges? There are few steps that need to be put in place before we get started.
Create a wellness vision.
A wellness vision is the picture that you have of yourself living your life the way you want it to be. It is a picture of you at your very best self. Your vision can be in any shape or form, a picture, a painting, bullet points or even a paragraph. It needs to be unique and meaningful to you. Before you create your vision, ask yourself, what is the reason I want to be this way? What is the true meaning behind my vision? By identifying your deep motivators will help keep you on track during your journey.
Reflect on how awesome you are.
We rarely take time to reflect on our achievements in life, but by identifying all the things that we do well will boost our confidence to help us achieve our goals. Take some time to list out your top five strengths, or reflect back on the times where you have successfully accomplished something. If you are struggling to think of them then you can take the VIA strengths survey to help you.
Identify any barriers and put tactics in place.
Look at your wellness vision and ask yourself, what could get in the way? Make a list of any potential hitches that may arise. Once you have jotted them down, read over them and start planning some strategies. You may need to get creative here!
Tell your family, partner, friends or work colleagues of your plans. Having support around you increases your chance of success.
Be prepared to fall.
Part of successful change is setbacks. You will fall down on your journey. Without falling down, you will never know how to get back up and with each setback you will grow, learn and develop new strengths. See life’s challenges as an opportunity for growth. It is this growth that leads to lasting change.
Are you ready?
This is one of the most important parts of goal setting. How ready are you for this change? How important is it for you to make this change right now? A good way to measure this is to use the ruler scale, give yourself a number between 1-10. Ideally you need to be at least at a 7 before you start your plan.
Why set goals?
Goals represent landmarks on a journey, if you don’t have a structured plan in place then there is no path to follow. Preparation is key for successful goal setting. Changing behaviour is essentially about changing habits. If you change your habits too quickly and without planning, and if you aren’t ready for that change it is harder to achieve those changes.
Start with a 3 month outcome goal with weekly action goals that lead you towards the 3 months. Starting with 3 months is more realistic for us to envision. If we change too quickly our bodies struggle to adapt. It is the small changes that lead to long lasting change. Ask yourself, what would I like to be doing in 3 months that will lead me towards my vision? What do I need to do to get there?
The SMART formula.
SMART stands for specific, measurable, attractive, realistic and timed. By using this principle you will prosper with your goals. For example if you goal is I want to be exercising a few times per week, this goal doesn’t fit the SMART formula, whereas, I want to be running on Mondays and Wednesdays for 45 minutes and strength training on Thursdays and Saturdays for 30 minutes does fit, as it is specific, measurable and timed. Realistic and attractive is equally important; the goal needs to be something that you really want to do as well as realistic to achieve. You can use the ruler scale again here, ask yourself, how confident am I that I can achieve this goal this week? How important is it to me?
Once you have set your 3 month goal, the next step is set your weekly goals that will lead you toward the 3 month goal. For example, your goal maybe, on Monday I will for a walk at 6am for 15 minutes, just remember to follow the SMART formula for all goals and you will smash through!
So now you are ready to start the journey to living the life that you want for 2017. Don’t forget that the power of change lies within you. It’s not an overnight fix. It’s an ongoing journey of growth and discovery. It certainly isn't easy and you will fall, but you will get back up, and with each step you will become closer to being the best that you can possibly be. It’s one hell of a ride to get there but I promise you it’s worth it.