Are you among the many who make New Year’s Resolutions? Do you usually follow through?
You’re in the minority if you do. Research shows that 80 to 90 percent of people abandon their resolutions within just a few short weeks. Why is that?
Here are 3 reasons why resolutions don’t stick, and 3 ways we can turn that around.
Mistake #1 Believing You’re Not Enough
Most of us make our resolutions from the belief that we need to fix something about ourselves, that in some way we’re not good enough. Coming from that punishing mindset creates self-judgement and sets us up for failure.
Try this: Create your resolutions from a place of self-care. Practice saying to yourself, “I’m fine as I am, but life might feel even better when I…”
Mistake #2 Ignoring Your True Nature
If you create a resolution to hit the gym 5x a week, but you absolutely HATE everything associated with a gym, how successful will that resolution be?
Try this: If your goal is to feel healthier and more fit, play to your strengths. Do you enjoy walking outside? Dancing? Gentle stretching? New habits stick when they feel intrinsically rewarding, so explore how you can align your goals to your natural interests.
Mistake #3 Starting Too Big
It’s so easy to get carried away by a resolution’s early excitement and motivation. You want results, and quickly! Imagine… you eat totally healthy for 7 days, excited to step on the scale and… you gain a pound! You feel disappointed and you’re starving. In this state, your brain says, “What’s the use?” And the siren song from that box of chocolate chip cookies is singing your name…
Try this: Take your cue from fairy tales and nursery rhymes. Goldilocks needed to try several (disastrous) options before she found one that was just right. The tortoise made slow, steady progress and bypassed the over-zealous hare. Your goal is to move slowly, becoming the person who adopts a new habit as a way of life. So perhaps that means modifying your diet to include one extra serving of fruits and veggies each day. Or choosing to park your car at the far end of the parking lot. If these things feel manageable, consider taking another small step in the direction of healthy living.
The Bottom Line?
When trying to implement a new habit or a lifestyle change, the most important ingredient is self-compassion. Change is hard; we take steps forward and we often fall back. Be kind to yourself. Congratulate yourself for showing up and trying to live your best life. Whether you begin on January 1st or any day of the year, it will never be too late take that first step.
What about you? Do you have any resolutions planned for 2022?