Why New Years Resolutions Don’t Work
It is about that time again when we get together with our friends, or loved ones or just make a private note to self and make our “New Year’s Resolutions”…This year I am going to….
You fill in the blank…This year I am going to lose weight, to quit smoking, drink less alcohol, Eat Healthy Food, Get a Better Job, Get Fit, Manage Debt, Manage Stress, Volunteer to Help Others. Are you making any New Years Resolutions this year?
How many have you made over the years that you truly followed through with? Are you still making the same resolutions knowing it will never be a reality? Maybe everyone’s new years resolutions should be never to make one again! The challenge is most resolutions are made on what you think you should do, not necessarily what you want to do, therefore they don’t work. Until you DECIDE…Latin dēcīdere literally, to cut off any other option, it will only be a RESOLUTION, a formal expression of opinion or intention made.
New Year’s Resolutions are great, but statistically less than 5% ever really follow through. Most of them are lost a few weeks into January and all is given up. Ironically we then decide, this worked so well this year, I am going to do it again next year. I believe they call that “insanity” doing the same thing and expecting different results.
Did you ever wonder why your New Year’s Resolutions don’t work? The idea is wonderful but the frequency and payout is short lived. A resolution is nothing more than a goal. You have a moment of motivation and you set yourself up for failure right from the start. Let’s take losing weight for example. It’s a few weeks after Thanksgiving and you know Christmas is around the corner. You don’t fit in any of your clothes and you tell yourself. Right after the holidays I am going to start my diet. First set up for failure…you then give yourself permission to eat more during the holidays because you intend to take it off later. Let’s just make the target more difficult to achieve. Party after party you continue to justify when you will stop stuffing your face. The holidays are over and you have all the left overs, this isn’t a good time to start eating healthy, I have all this food in the house, I’ll wait until it is all gone. Then it is someone’s birthday and we need to have some cake because its bad luck not to, or we go to a friend and they offer some dessert and you think it ill of you not to indulge, you may look bad, as if you don’t already. Then you are entertaining and you think you must serve sweets for the sweets so you buy more bad food, then there are left overs…and so the story continues until next year when you make that resolution again. Any of this sounds familiar?
You would think something so important wouldn’t be thought of just once a year. Are you looking to achieve something more in your life? Is your health suffering, your family life challenging, are you making choices of what to do and where to go based on how fat you feel or if you are afraid you wont be able to control yourself? Do you hate looking at yourself in the mirror, telling yourself the same lies? Then do something now. Don’t wait to make a decision that will affect the rest of your life and don’t make a decision based on what you think you are supposed to do, but instead on what you really want to do.
So have you ever thought, “What do I really want?” Not what everyone else is telling you or the advertisements are saying, but on what you really want for you. Are you looking to get healthy, feel great, have more energy, be able to look in the mirror and like what you see, is that what you want? Some people say I am going to work hard and make more money this year. That never works either, because no one does anything for dead presidents on dollar bills. They do things because of what they believe it will give them once they have it. Perhaps security, freedom, choices. Think about what you really want and then why do you want it?
The bigger the Why…the harder you will try! What is it that it is costing you not having it, who else is it affecting? Then DECIDE… make a decision and cut off any other options of it not working and just do it!
Make it measurable so you can succeed. If you are looking to lose 50lbs, then don’t expect it to come off in 1 month; it took you longer to put it on. Start with something easy like I’m going to reduce my sugar intake, going to add exercise 2-3 times a week to your regime. Create a plan that you can win at. See the finish line and what that will mean to you. Something that will make you get up and do what you wouldn’t have normally done before. Think of how good it is going to feel when you get there, how every day improves just a little more with every positive action you take, what you are going to do to celebrate your victory. Create measurable benchmarks to reward yourself along the way. It is not the destination, but the journey in life where we truly live. Find support of others that want similar goals and be each others raving fan. Remember one bad moment doesn’t have to be a bad day. It was only a moment. Decide every day at every meal to be good to yourself. Every meal you have the option again to make that decision. Until one day there is no decision because it just is.
If you need to get a handle on your fear of being not good enough, please reach out. We can help you can get on with your life.