It's a new year, the beginning of a new promise. A new beginning that carries with it new hopes and aspirations for us to achieve our dreams and goals.
And yet, according to statistics, 8 percent of New Year's resolutions succeed. Most of us make new year resolutions based on impulse and emotions. We start our new year on a high, and overtime, we lose steam and the willingness to see our resolutions through.
If you are reading this, it means this time you are committed to achieve your goals. Here are some tips to help you ace your resolutions by the year's end.
The best way to look forward into the new year is reflect on the year gone by. Take time to evaluate 2017. How was 2017 for you? What resolutions did you make in 2017? Which ones were you able to fulfil and why? Which ones do you want to carry through to 2018?
Taking some time to reflect on these will not only help you decide what resolutions are important for you, but it will also help you avoid the pitfalls you faced in the previous year.
Write down your resolutions
Writing your resolutions down is the best way to get yourself mentally prepared for your goals. By writing them down, you are taking the first step in affirming to yourself, "I am ready, I am willing and I will do it." Once you have it written down, make sure you look at the list at least once a week. Keep it in a prominent place like hanging it on your fridge door, your bedroom wall, your dairy or even your screensaver! The more you remind yourself about your goals, the more committed you will be.
The top three New Year's resolutions are usually: One, to be fit and healthy (37 percent); two, to enjoy life to the fullest (28 percent); and three, to save more money (25 percent).
When it comes to New Year's resolutions, or any goals for that matter, we shoot for the stars and in the process, we forget the discipline and commitment that comes with it.
If we are serious about our goals, we need to understand the importance of having a committed mindset to accompany our aspirations. One way of ensuring you stay committed is to have an accountability partner or someone who has similar resolutions so that you can encourage each other along the way. Not only does this make it easier, but it makes it fun!
We often think that in order to achieve something great, we need to make big changes. This cannot be further away than the truth. Success is achieved by making small changes and sticking to them consistently until it becomes a habit.
January sees the highest number of gym memberships. Yet, most people don't last beyond a few months.
This is because we start out with the unrealistic expectation that we need to achieve a certain weight/fat loss over a limited period.
When we set ourselves unrealistic goals, we are dead on arrival. Other times, we psyche ourselves into believing that we will go to the gym seven days a week (when we are not used to working out at all). We need to bear in mind that targets cannot be achieved overnight. We can achieve greater fat loss over a period of time but it requires discipline, effort and perseverance. Give yourself the time you need to get there. Be patient with yourself.
It is inevitable that there will be times we will fall off the bandwagon. There will be times we will reach out for that cupcake or sleep in and miss the gym. Don't let that discourage you. Failure isn't the opposite of success. It is part of success. It doesn't matter how many times you fall. What matters is how many times you pick yourself up.
There are times when I have failed so often and discouragement starts to sink in. When that starts to happen, I catch myself in that process and speak words of affirmation into my life. I tell myself: "Failure is an act, not a definition of who I am. I have done this before, I can do this again. I am not a quitter."
Sometimes I "trick" myself into ensuring I see through my goals. If I plan to go to the gym in the morning, I will ensure my gym clothes are all laid out, my gym bag is ready and I have two alarms that will ring five minutes apart from each other. So when the time comes, I am already mentally charged and ready.
Old habits die hard. As long as we are willing to take one step at a time, refresh our minds and press the refresh button every time we fail, nothing can stop us from achieving that goal.
The only thing that stands between you and your goal is YOU. So 2018, Bring it!
We are ready.
Meena Kumari Adnani is an inspirational writer on social media. Her writing can be found on Facebook under "Strong and Shine" or on Instagram @strongandshine. She is also executive vice president of content development and business affairs at First Media.