I have talked to friends, family members and clients that have already fallen off their plan and away from their goals. We aren’t even into the month of February and people are already saying “I just don’t have as much time as I thought I would”; “I’m going to start fresh next month, I’m just too busy this month”; “It got so COLD and by the time I get home from work I’m so tired and I don’t want to go back out”; “Nobody really keeps their New Years Resolutions anyway!”; and the most defeatist of all “There’s always next year!”. What gives? WHY are people just giving up and walking away? Why don’t people believe that they can achieve their goals and then some!? Here’s my guess…
TOP 5 REASONS PEOPLE DON’T ACHIEVE THEIR NEW YEARS RESOLUTIONS:
1) They aren’t serious when they make the resolution in the first place. It has become something that everyone does and talks about during the holidays. I would guess that more than 70% of people who list resolutions actually do not have any serious intention on MAKING it happen.
2) They do not put measures in place to GET IT DONE. Anyone can think up a resolution or goal. Anyone can tell their family and friends their resolution(s)…New Years Resolutions are almost taken with a grain of salt by others. But how many folks actually sit down to write them out and then plan the roadmap on HOW to get there. Saying you want to lose 10 pounds or be able to run an 8 minute mile is one thing. Figuring out how to CHANGE your current schedule to fit in time to make it happen is quite another.
3) Their goals are not S.M.A.R.T. (This is an acronym that stands for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic and Timely). Goals/resolutions can’t be vague, and without specific measurable components. In order to be achieved they must have some sense of realness to them, or they will be an automatic setup for failure.
4) They follow the crowd when choosing a goal. Many folks do not stop and take a little time to think about what THEY want to personally/professionally achieve in the upcoming year. Instead of thinking back and reviewing what has happened in their own lives, they follow what the masses are after. I want to lose 10 lbs; I want to eat better; I want to be more fit; I want to tone up…the list goes on and on. Not only are these vague but they are without personal connection. A Huuuuuge part of staying on track toward goal achievement is constantly reminding yourself WHY you want it.
5) They do not truly BELIEVE they can change their lives. In order to achieve a goal- ANY goal- you must first have total, 100% belief in yourself. You must be able to close your eyes and envision yourself achieving this goal. You must SEE it in your mind’s eye, feel it in your bones, and want it with every fiber of your being. You must mentally make it a non-negotiable; You don’t stop until its yours. Having others around to support and motivate you can be an enormous help, but if you don’t believe in yourself their words will be meaningless.
If you relate with any (or all) of the above 5 points, fear not, there’s still time to turn it all around! Here are some suggestions on how you can get back on track and move toward your goals/resolutions.
FIVE TIPS TO GET BACK ON TRACK TOWARD YOUR GOALS/RESOLUTIONS
1) Make sure your goal is something you WANT. Do not jump on board with your roommate, best friend, partner, or sibling just because. Take some time to sit down and figure out what change(s) you’d like to see in your life. Derive your goals from there.
2) Make your goals S.M.A.R.T. Remember the acronym from above: Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic and Timely. Do not make a vague goal such as “I want to lose weight” or “I want to tone up”. Instead have a goal of “I want to lose 1 lb a week for 10 weeks by exercising for X mins a day for X days per week, eating more fruits, veggies, lean proteins & cutting out soda and fried food”….Or “I want to be able to do 10 push ups on the floor by May…I will do so by signing up with a personal trainer at my gym and getting a personalized strength training program made for me”
3) Make room for changes. Some of the best advice I’ve ever received is “Nothing changes if nothing changes”. It couldn’t be more true. If you do not make changes in your daily routine, food intake, exercise regimen, interactions with people, etc… then you can’t expect any changes to happen to the bottom line. Your day-to-day will need to feel a bit different, because it will need to BE a bit different.
4) Believe you can get it done. Think about the goal you want so badly that you’re willing to do whatever it takes to get there. Close your eyes and picture getting it done. Picture being there, at the “finish line”. Think about how you feel both physically and mentally. Channel those thoughts and that energy into your efforts in the journey. You must truly believe in your ability to get to the finish.
5) WRITE IT DOWN. This point definitely gets wrapped up in a few other points above, but deserves its own. I can not emphasize enough the power of the written word. It doesn’t take much to think about or even talk about doing something. But it takes a higher level of dedication to sit and write it out on paper. It makes it more real, it puts it right there in front of your face. Write down your goal (In INK or MARKER) and hang it somewhere you can see it. Also write down WHY you want to achieve the goal. Seeing these statements day in and day out will keep it fresh in your brain. It will help to keep your fire burning!
So what now? Go. Get. It. Done. If you’ve fallen off the Resolution wagon, review these points and get back on!!!! If you’re chugging along full force but know someone who could use a hand, send them this blog post and offer to help them out. There’s no reason an entire year of hopeful change should be sacrificed before the first month is over. Dream it then DO it!