By February, some people are on track with their goals, while others have long forgotten the resolution they made over dinner on December 31st. With the Chinese New Year being in February, you can have a second chance.
#1 The goal was casually mentioned and then casually forgotten
It’s easy to say what you want over a glass of champagne and not so easy to follow through. Resolution means a firm decision. Important decisions in life usually require thoughtful planning, consideration and execution. This all begins with choosing goals that are important to you.
Second Chance: Spend time thinking about what you want to happen in your life this year. What would really make a difference for you and why? Write down your goals on a piece of paper with their deeper meanings. Putting them in writing makes them more real. Hang the paper somewhere you can see it and when you’re making your to-do list each week or looking at your calendar, make time for your goals. Don’t let them get forgotten so easily.
#2 The accountability isn’t there
Even the best intentions can be challenging to achieve without support. Humans are social creatures by nature. Doing things together enhances happiness and yes, accountability. You’re more likely to show up for a workout if someone is meeting you there, like a friend, coach, teacher or group of people. Social accountability helps many people follow through better than when they try to do things on their own.
Second Chance: Get a partner or hire a private coach. You can join a group class or club, depending on what your goal is. Other people provide support and encouragement when you’re not feeling motivated. They also add variety and spice things up. Choosing like-minded people that you enjoy being with is important to consider when making your choices.
#3 The goal is too big, vague and overwhelming.
“I want to lose weight”, “I want to eat better” and “I want to exercise more” are common new years resolutions that have many paths to the same destination. Five different people can want to lose weight and all take a different path or approach to this goal for different reasons. One might do it with nutrition and because their doctor told them they were at risk for diabetes while another might be getting ready for a wedding and lose the weight by running every day.
Second Chance: Know what your goal is and why you want it. Then, break it down into smaller steps. If you want to lose weight, decide what you’re willing to change in your life. Is it your eating habits, exercise routine or both? What small changes can you make this week move in the right direction? The smaller the changes, the more likely they are to stick. You can keep progressing gradually because you’re checking in with your goals every week, remember?(review #1)
If you want to run a marathon, start small. Run 1/2 mile. Then, run 1 mile. This is not only more encouraging mentally, but safer physically. Smaller steps are less intimidating to your brain when it’s time to get into action and they give your body time to adapt properly.
Contemplate your goals, analyze them for deeper meaning, find people to share them with and break them down into smaller chunks. The more thought you put into what you want, the more likely you are to get it. Happy goal setting and remember, check your goals before you check your email!