If you’re like most people, every new year brings a list of resolutions that you want to accomplish. Unfortunately, as you might have heard, the majority of resolutions are abandoned by February. This year, if you want to give yourself the best chance of success, start earlier and prepare with these seven steps:
- Start now. Why wait until the first week of January when you can do the initial prep work now and be ready to execute your resolution starting on January 1st?
- Make a list. Most resolutions come to us intuitively, and that’s a part of the reason they also tend to leave so intuitively. Instead, think about all the things you want to accomplish next year and rank them by level of priority.
- Focus. To increase your odds of success, only start to work on the resolution that’s most important to you. Any additional plans may distract you from your most important resolution. Let’s face it—succeeding at one resolution is better than failing at two or three of them.
- Create a schedule. Want to learn a new language? Make a plan for how many hours you’ll study each week. Want to lose weight? Write down your planned fitness routine and diet. Writing things down, rather than just keeping them in your head, will help to solidify the idea in your mind and make it more likely for you to stick to a schedule.
- Buy any necessary equipment. You can’t get started on your journey if you don’t have all the necessary equipment you need, so you should make a point to buy any necessary gear ahead of time.
- Don’t buy any unnecessary equipment. This is so important that it gets its own point. Too many of us fall into the trap of buying our way toward things we want to accomplish, only to spend the money and never actually follow through on our plan. Almost every family has a few pieces of abandoned fitness equipment laying around the house as proof of this. Try a different technique next year by starting with the absolute minimum required to reach your goal. Without the distraction of new gear, you’ll be able to focus on the task at hand.
- Build accountability into your plan. Numerous studies have shown that you’re much more likely to stick to your goal if you let others know about it, and are then held accountable to them. Whether you want to call this “motivation” or “fear of embarrassment,” the technique definitely works. To improve your odds even more, find a friend who also has a resolution and agree to check in frequently with each other about the status of your resolutions.
Do you have a success story about sticking to your New Year’s resolution? We want to hear about it! Get in touch with us!