Do you wonder how the people that kept their New Year’s resolutions actually did it? Especially when you have ditched yours after a few weeks? This seems to be pretty much the standard result of most resolutions. Most of us suck at keeping them, so maybe it would be good to find out the secrets from people who actually kept their New Year’s resolutions.
So let’s look at 6 secrets that helped them achieve the goals for the New Year
1) Their Resolutions Do Not Require Big Changes
Most of us look at the span of a year and feel that we have lots of times to accomplish our resolutions. This gives us a false sense of security and causes us expect way too much. Either we try to reach too big of a goal or we try to accomplish too many goals. If you remember one of the basic rules from Goal Setting 101, we were told to set goals that are realistic and attainable. Most of us violate this rule in a big way when it comes to New Year’s resolutions.
Here’s a great way to approach your New Year’s goals. Focus instead on improving 1% every single day of the year. This is both attainable and very effective. Just ask the tortoise who outran the hare how it worked for him. So focus on only one goal that requires this 1% daily improvement.
2) Every Day They Write Down Their Resolution
Many people feel weird about doing this, but it does a couple of things for you. When you write it down each day, you remind yourself of the goal and you keep it in front of you. And there is also another way to look at it – writing down your resolution daily is a commitment on its own sake. If you are not going to stick to writing down your goal every day, then how are you going to stick to accomplishing it?
So look at writing as the prelude or warmup to attaining your goal. When you do it, you are committing yourself reaching your objective as well.
3) They have a Strong Reason
Here is another rule from Goal Setting 101. Goals are much more likely to be achieved when you have a strong reason for achieving them. A good reason assures that you have the required motivation and desire to get it done.
So be sure and ask yourself why you want this New Year’s resolution and get some leverage on yourself. Desire goes a very long way when it comes to achieving results – in virtually any field.
4) Their Resolutions will Benefit Others
This secret sort of piggybacks on the previous secret in that you are seeking out something else that will motivate you. As we just said earlier, desire goes a very long way in accomplishing your New Year’s resolution, so we need to get as much of it as we can muster.
Take a very close look at your resolution, find a way that the people around will also benefit from your accomplishing this goal. Generally speaking, there are very few resolutions out there that don’t benefit the family members, friends, and even co-workers in some way. So make sure you know what those benefits are when it comes to your New Year’s resolutions.
5) They Find Ways to be Held Accountable
This may the secret that is most vulnerable to being violated. One big reason is that it may be difficult to find an effective way to hold yourself accountable. Unless you get another person to hold you accountable, then you are on the honor system. The question there is – can you be honest with yourself? Unfortunately, not all of us can.
Another reason this secret is a challenge is because it requires that your goal be measurable in some way. Your resolution needs to have some milestones if at all possible. When you have them, then get a trusted friend, spouse, or family member to review your progress with you periodically. At the very least, track your own progress on a spreadsheet or in a notebook.
6) They Make Failure Difficult
This is a very good secret and also an effective one. The easiest way to make failure difficult is simply to tell everyone you know about your New Year’s resolution before you start. Now think of how embarrassed you will be if you don’t achieve your goal. Now how does that feel? Bury that embarrassment deep into your mind.
The other great way to make failure difficult is through a monetary bet or wager. And make sure it is an uncomfortably large amount of money.
Working with These Secrets
If you take them seriously, there secrets are very helpful and effective in helping you reach your New Year’s resolutions. Do not sweat it if you cannot use all of them. Many people get there by focusing hard on just one of these secrets. But I urge to use as many as possible – why not hedge your bet?