I willingly admit that I am in the bottom 24 percent. Yet, every year, I make one (or five) new resolutions that I intend to keep for the next 365 days.
After doing some digging (both in my soul and on the Internet), I discovered what is holding me (and so many people) back from reaching our goals.
The No.1 reason people don’t follow through on their resolutions is that they lack self-discipline.
This is both obvious and defeating. Of course, I don’t have self-discipline. When I think of the “d-word”, it conjures up images of monks that deny themselves all earthly pleasures. It’s just not for me. I like earthly pleasures – that’s pretty much why I’m here on earth.
Though I struggle with self-discipline, I have learned that there are quite a few simple ways to overcome this shortcoming and still keep my resolutions.
Call it a one-month resolution.365 days. 12 months. 525,600 minutes. Big numbers are daunting and scary and make us feel like we’re never going to get there. Which is why you shouldn’t think about any goal in those terms. According to a recent study, the majority of people (75 percent!) who successfully made it through just the first month of their resolutions continued working on them through the rest of the year. Challenging ourselves for one month is significantly more appealing anyway. And, it's a good step toward turning this new behavior into a daily habit. In other words, our goal-keeping goes on autopilot.
Have a game plan.So, I lied earlier about this advice being all easy. Because making a game plan is clearly not a fun task to take on, unless you’re an organizer-at-heart, which I am not. But figuring out how you’re going to fulfill your resolution is the most crucial step, because then, you’ll actually know how to do it. Think about it. Do we just go on a trip without planning our itinerary? Do we simply start cooking without a recipe to follow? Probably not. Making a game plan for achieving our goals is the same thing. We want to have a guide that will help keep us on track and also monitor our progress. It can be as simple as:
Goal: I want to save $____in 2014 to buy a __________.
Jan. goal: Save $____
What expenses will I cut down to save this money?
Amount saved $_______
Extra expenses: Birthday, holidays, etc.
I know there are a ton of other tips out there that I’ve missed – these are just the ones that really resonated with me. If you have any advice for keeping your resolutions, I’d love to hear them in the comments below.
And if you’re not sure what goals you’d like to make for next year, get some ideas from this list of the top 40 resolutions from 2013 here.
Follow me @thisjenkim