How to Fulfill My New Year's Resolution
There is something about a New Year that thrills us- an opportunity to create brand new beginnings that is aimed towards becoming the better versions of ourselves as compared to last year. This is actually a perfect mindset to start the year right. We are fueled with hope that this year is going to be a great year for us and we write down our goals and New Year’s resolution. We vow to make changes this year for the better. (I will go to the gym regularly, I will trim down on my sweet tooth indulgence.Will feed my mind by reading more books. Will travel more and the list goes on.)
Now that we are starting with a good perspective, how do we sustain it so that we don’t only get excited to leap for a change every January of a new year? Is it even possible to keep what we’ve started from Day One of the new year up to even at least the end of this year?
The answer off course is a resounding YES. But to get the results you need, you need to plan and set appropriate action steps in place. It is not enough that just because you feel excited and thrilled about the changes you’ll make at the start of the year that you can actually sustain those emotions until the end of the year. Hard fact is, what brings you to your desired results are the little consistent steps you make every day in line with your goal. Being Consistent is equivalent to just keep going, even when you don’t feel like doing it at all anymore.
Don’t worry,as I write these things, I am one with you to say that it is not easy. But if you think (and only you can determine the weight of how important your goal is to you) that the changes you need to make or the goals that you want to achieve are so important to you; then let’s get started to see how this is possible.
1. You need to evaluate yourself. Do I really want this and do I think in doing so I will become a better person?
Classic example, exercising or going to the gym. Self-check; why do I want to go to the gym regularly or why do I need to exercise? To stay fit. Good. Will it benefit me in the long run and make me a better person? If you need to do your further research on the health benefits of exercising regularly then do so, you need to gather as many facts you can to help you weigh things whether this goal you are trying to achieve is really that important for you. If not, then focus on determining what other goals you have that you think needs to be prioritize and accomplished this year.
2. Write down concrete action steps.
Again, going back to our first example of keeping yourself fit by exercising daily or by frequently going to the gym, it is not enough that you just write down your goal, (say, for the sake of example) to visit the gym regularly. Be more specific. Write down how often you think you can commit in going to the gym factoring in your work schedule and other activities you have. Achieving desired results do not happen instantly, you need to patiently commit to doing the same things over and over again consistently. Once you have determined how often you think you can commit to exercise or go to the gym; how many hours in a day or how many times in a week then stick to it. It is better to create baby steps of your action plans and be able to do it consistently, than go big steps that are almost impossible for you to commit on. Key again is consistency.
3. Track your progress and reward yourself every time.
Say, finally, you have decided that since Health is a priority for you, you will make time to exercise daily for 15 minutes and go to the gym at least once a week for an hour every session. Now make a tracker that is big like a vision board. It has to be something that will catch your attention every day. A task once you start doing it continually will become a habit which will be so naturally incorporated into your lifestyle. Now, If you know that you are making a good progress, give yourself a pat on the back or have simple rewards. It helps to be reminded that our commitment to finish what we’ve started is all worthy.
4. Find accountability partner/partners.
This goal is important to you right? Perfect, now you need to get others involved in your goal so that they can help you stay focused on your goal. We all have moments where emotions are really tossing and turning and we don’t feel like continuing at all. Having the right people who would help us stay motivated is important. Good accountability partners help us keep our focus by reminding us of the importance of these goals to us. Make sure you have a good relationship with your accountability partner/partners.
5. Take a deep breathe, Smile, and Pray.
When I try to do things that I know are important but are not easy, I would really ask God to give me the strength and enough determination to help me see pass through all the hurdles that can distract me from achieving my goals. I also start the year asking God to help me determine the right priorities so I can focus my energy in doing what is important rather than doing a lot of things. Again, in setting goals, begin by determining which things are important for you this year and regard that with high priority. This is crucial because you want good results at the end of the year for the goals you have set at the beginning,and not just end up getting busy with things that are not part of your top priorities. Now, once this is in place, make sure that you have a time allotted for these things.