Prepare to give yourself the best chance of changing this New Year…

It is that time of the year again, that time when we make promises to ourselves, promises which are usually always broken. “I will get up every morning for a run”, I am going to fit into that dress this year”, Sound familiar? Why is it that so many New Year resolutions aren’t followed through with and end up in a huge relapse right back where we started from? Gym memberships are significantly increased throughout January, only to dwindle from February and beyond.

If you have a friend who is making some grand statements but you just know that they will not follow through this year (because of their terrible follow through rate or they were partying when they decided to go ahead with the gym membership), get them to read this. I outline why people fail and how they can better approach their New Year resolution. Give a gift of hope this new years and lets help each other really think through these new year resolutions.

You are probably reflecting on the year that was – the sad moments, the successful moments, the unforgettable moments, the moments where you slipped further into unhealthy ruts. The festive seasons seems like the perfect time to get ourselves back on track.

We dream of changing ourselves to make us better, healthier, richer, and more popular. We all dream. Whatever the dream, we often make promises to ourselves to strive towards making the dreams into our reality. When all those around us are speaking of positively changing their lives, I guess it is rather contagious. We all simultaneously decide that it is a great idea to use the 01.01 as the perfect reason to begin some self-improvement. Positive vibes are there, so what is the problem with this picture?

‘There are two days in the year that we cannot do anything, yesterday and tomorrow’ – Mahatma Gandhi.

There is a clearly defined model which is followed to successfully change any behaviour for the better. Contemplating changing your habits is the very first step. Congratulations! This step is in the picture we just painted. After you have recognised something in your lifestyle is a little wrong comes the step where you decide to do something about it.

Deciding to do something about those blessed habits at New Year often stems from others around us wanting to do the same. Does the decision really come from the inside, or the peer pressure from around us? Only with true internal desire to change will any New Year resolution end up successful. Really take a moment to think to yourself and decide whether you are really ready to begin making changes. How bad do you want to change? How far are you willing to go remembering, it is a long term change?

Once you have decided to go ahead and make the changes, you will most likely need to take some time out to prepare a plan. Time needs to be taken to evaluate the situation and determine what needs to be done to tackle the bad habit. Determining your process (how you will get to where you want) is crucial to your journeys arrival. This process needs to start with just a few small changes which lead in a specific direction – towards your ultimate goal.

Often while we rush to be this new golden person, we forget to set ourselves realistic goals. Have you heard of the SMART goal setting guidelines? Setting SMART goals (specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, timeframe) really provides your New Year resolution with direction, guidance and a chance of achieving what you set out to do.

If you do decide that the time is right to make a change for the better, here are my top 5 tips for making sure you give yourself a better chance of reaching the new you.

Top 5 New Year resolution tips:

– Take time and make sure you really are ready to change. Remember you don’t have to start on 01.01!!
– Set SMART goals to know how you will become the golden person of your dreams.
– Only change one thing at a time. Make very small, simple changes. Try 1 change per week.
– Have a vision of the end result.
– Know WHY you are making the changes in the first place. Remind yourself of this often – write it down somewhere you see it regularly.

Don’t wait until tomorrow. We all know what tomorrow means (a.k.a. never!). If you really want to make a change, do it NOW.

Did you rethink your new year resolution after reading this? I would love to know how – comment below!