Only 8% of People Achieve Their New Year’s Resolutions.
Here’s How YOU Can Do It.
Let me guess: You want to lose weight in 2016. Maybe you want to make more money. Perhaps you want to spend more time with your friends and family. You might even want to expand your business into a new area.
Self-improvement, or at least the desire for it, is a shared American hobby. It’s why so many of us—some estimates say more than 40% of Americans—make New Year’s resolutions. (For comparison, about one-third of Americans watch the Super Bowl.)
But for all the good intentions, only a tiny fraction of us keep our resolutions; University of Scranton research suggests that just 8% of people achieve their New Year’s goals.
Why do so many people fail at goal setting, and what are the secrets behind those who succeed? The explosion of studies into how the brain works has more experts attempting to explain the science behind why we make resolutions—and more relevantly, how we can keep them.
KISS – Keep it Simple (I assume you know the what the last “S” is)
Many people use the New Year as an opportunity to make large bucket lists or attempt extreme makeovers, whether personal or professional.
That’s a nice aspiration —but the average person has so many competing priorities that this type of approach is doomed to failure before it even begins. Essentially, shooting for the moon can be so psychologically daunting, you end up failing to launch in the first place.
So this year, Keep your resolution list short…
And it’s more sensible to set “small, attainable goals throughout the year, rather than a singular, overwhelming goal,” according to psychologist Lynn Bufka. “Remember, it is not the extent of the change that matters, but rather the act of recognizing that lifestyle change is important and working toward it, one step at a time…
Make it Tangible
Setting ambitious resolutions can be fun and inspiring, but the difficulty in achieving them means that your elation can quickly give way to frustration. That’s why goals should be bounded by rational, achievable metrics.
“It is much easier to follow a plan that says no potato chips, fries, or ice cream for six weeks.”
And be specific. Don’t say you’re “going to start going to the gym” in 2016—set a clear ambition, like attending a weekly spin class or lifting weights every Tuesday or Thursday.
“We say if you can’t measure it, it’s not a very good resolution because vague goals beget vague resolutions”
Make it Obvious
Charting your goals in some fashion, although there’s no universal strategy for success. For some, making a clear schedule and daily task is enough of a reminder; Utilize your calendar like outlook to build the perfect schedule to follow and success will be the result.
An strategic tactic: share your goals with your friends and family. It’s another way to build accountability, especially in the Facebook era.
Believe in yourself.
To be clear: Simply setting a goal does raise your chances of achieving that goal, significantly. But within weeks or months, people begin abandoning their resolutions as they hit bumps in the road that throw them off their stride. At the end of the day you MUST believe in yourself. Know whom you are inside. Know what you are capable of. Visualize yourself after you achieve your goal and all the ancillary things that come along with it.
“What the mind can perceive, it can and WILL achieve”