30 April 2014
If you’re like me, since Christmas you will have lost those unwanted pounds, gotten fit, given up smoking, got your finances into some sort of order, found a new hobby (if you’re bored), found a partner (if you’re single) and generally improved your life in all the ways we promise ourselves we will at the end of a year.
What is it about New Year’s that makes us take stock, find we’re wanting, and resolve to change the habits of a lifetime within the space of 365 days? And more importantly, what is it about New Year’s that makes us give up on the resolutions before we’ve had time to commit to them?
Studies say that 20% of New Year’s resolutions are broken within the first week of January, and that 80% are broken within the first year. There’s good news in this – at the beginning of May there’s still plenty of time to ensure you don’t fall into that latter group. And if you look at New Year’s resolutions objectively, they are only goals, and goals don’t need to be tied to the beginning of a year. Nor should they be. After all, if losing weight and improving your health is important to you, why would you wait eight months to start?
Lots of people (not me) keep their resolutions and here’s how they do it:
- They make resolutions that are specific and doable.
- They understand the power of science in goal setting and they commit to the process of change and self-mastery. It can be helpful to learn off the best when it comes to this stuff. Check out these books by Anthony Robbins, Brian Tracy and Steven Covey
- They choose goals that are fun, and that they’re passionate about. If you’re a movie buff, resolve to see a new movie each and every week. If you love books, but don’t read as much as you should, try to work your reading into what might otherwise be down time. I bought a Kindle a few years back, and now read on my journeys to and from work. It adds up to two hours hours reading a day, in which I entertain myself, and learn. Beats staring out the bus window.
- They let friends know what their goals and resolutions are and ask them for support.
- They track their progress. For instance, if you’re dieting, try a tool such as the Food Diary and Calorie Tracker PRO (an app for the Android phone), which has helped countless people track and reach their diet goals.
- Those who are successful don’t beat themselves up if they go off track – they just get back on track as quickly as possible, and they understand success is relative, and not an absolute.
As for me, you’re probably wondering how I’m weighing in – no pun intended – with my own resolutions. Actually, I didn’t make any this year, but I’m going to set some goals now.
What are they? They’re inspired by the title of this book by Timothy Ferriss – The 4-Hour Body An Uncommon Guide to Rapid Fat-Loss, Incredible Sex and Becoming Superhuman
Watch this space and I’ll let you know how I go.
Hopefully before the New Year.