New year, new me, new set of resolutions. Sound familiar? I’m not a huge fan of New Year’s Eve itself (massive anti-climax alert and I always find myself feeling a little emotional. Nothing to do with the bubbly I swear…) but I do like the feeling that a new year brings. That ‘turning over a new leaf’ feeling. The starting afresh. It fills me with a sense of new direction and purpose, and I find myself visualising how I want the year to play out. (Imagine how cool it would be to be able to watch a trailer of your 2017. Or would that spoil things?). This does have it’s downfalls however as I tend to get over-excited and write a rather unrealistic list as long as my arm of things I want to achieve. This blog post I’ll be revealing my tips on how to keep your New Year’s resolutions so that you can see 2017 out with your list ticked off, as opposed to finding it shoved down the end of your bed, or in the box with the smoothie blender that never quite made it into your daily routine either…
Don’t Make Too Many
Probably the most fundamental rule of them all when setting your New Year’s resolutions – don’t make too many! You may be like me and want to do everything and do it now, but it’s just not possible. You are not Superman or Wonder Woman and by setting too many resolutions that you’re physically not capable of completing will only set you up for disappointment. There will be a year after this one, and a year after that. There’s plenty of time, so have a real think of what is most important to you right now. I’d say a good number of resolutions for the year would be a maximum of 3 or 4. This won’t put too much pressure on yourself and you’re far more likely to succeed.
Once you have your little list of 3 or 4 resolutions, prioritise them in order of importancy. Which one matters the most to you and would give you the biggest sense of achievement once you can tick it off? That’s number 1. Some factors will influence the order that you prioritise your resolutions i.e. quitting smoking might seem more urgent than completing your novel for obvious reasons. There are no rules however. If redecorating your flat will fill you with more contentment than clearing your credit card bill, that’s A OK too. Just maybe try not to add to your debt whilst doing so…
Some things may take longer than a year. Some things you may not be able to do on your own. Some may be an idea that will sit on your list and fade into the page as it’s just something that isn’t quite attainable for whatever reason. BE. REALISTIC. Rome wasn’t made in a day and if you want to build a school in Nigeria (which is fantastic) you’re very unlikely to be able to do that with your own two hands. If you’re really passionate about one of your resolutions and determined to see it come to life, consider if you will need some help in doing it. Don’t take on too much than you can handle as it will more than likely end in failure. Dirty word that.
Make A Plan
Fail to plan, plan to fail. It’s overwhelmingly true. Once you know what it is that you want to complete this year, you have to create a plan to understand how you’re going to get there. Having a plan for your resolutions will give you focus and a step-by-step guide that will make the whole process a lot easier. You’ll be able to track your progress and avoid trying to do too much at once. Set a realistic deadline for when you want to have your goal completed and then work out what you would have to do each week/month to make it happen. Having a well thought out plan could take you no more than an hour. An hour out of your year is minuscule, but it could be the difference between seeing you complete your resolution, and not.
Have Some Fun!
Yes, your resolutions should be a challenge. Yes, they should push you to improve. But if you’re finding them more gruelling than rewarding, then really what’s the point? Life is too short to do anything other than what makes you happy. If you’re a few weeks or months in to your resolution and you’re miserable from slogging it in the weights section to get that summer six pack, maybe it’s time to re-evaluate. It’s taking up room on your resolutions list and you could swap it for something that is going to both challenge and fulfil you. It’s not defeat. It’s just using your time productively. That’s not me persuading you to give up too easily, but rather encourage you to pick goals that you’re not going to groan at every time it comes to doing the legwork.
I hope these are helpful! And remember, although they’re called “New Year’s Resolutions”, you can set goals for yourself whatever time of the year. Don’t wait for a new January to pick up a new hobby, or make amends with a friend that you haven’t spoken to for years, do it now.
What are your tips for keeping your resolutions?