Welcome January! I am looking forward to all that 2014 will bring. January is the beginning of a new year. New Thoughts. New Hopes. New dreams. January can be a fun and exciting marker in your life or a pressure filled moment. There are many reasons why we feel so pressured on Jan 1. Lets look at the reasons that we pressure ourselves and let them go forever.
Once upon a time, someone came up with a brilliant idea to have resolutions on New Years. So, through media, social outlets and friends we fill our post holiday conversations with things like the purchase of a new Gym membership, weight loss goals, better money management, quitting an addiction and various other common resolutions. We spend a short period of time discussing this new change only to get to about March and it all unravels. Our energy level towards said resolution fizzles. We become preoccupied with other more pressing life moments and excuses pile up as to why we cant at the moment or we extend the life of our change to next week.
“I’ll eat less starting next week.”
“ I’ll quite smoking Next week. “
So, lets look at Statistics on Resolutions and rethink our New Years Day.
According to Statisticsbrain.com, these are the most common Resolutions and success percentages:
Self Improvement or education related resolutions 47%
Weight related resolutions 38%
Money related resolutions 34%
Relationship related resolutions 31%
Resolution maintained through first week 75%
Past two weeks 71%
Past one month 64%
Past six months 46%
What if we were to think about Goals instead of resolution? What if we actually felt the DESIRE to change and focused on the feeling of enjoyment caused by said change? What if we slowly worked our way up for say, 21 days just thinking every day about the change and then slowly acting on it. What if we made an effort to actually writing, reading and focusing on said change for 21 days? So, instead of thinking about your change briefly, say around the dinner table at Thanksgiving when we feel guilty about what we just shoved in our mouths, we actually set a goal in Jan for a 21 day stretch. This stretch will consist of learning all the wonderful things that would happen IF we make our change? THEN, we slowly work towards it.
For example, start reading about all the benefit of working out and after the research get a gym membership. Set your goal on 3 days a week. Set reminders on your calendar to pop up. Go three days a week for 21 days. Check in on your feelings. Do you feel GOOD? Do you see any physical changes? Are you starting to look forward to going? If yes, then add another day. Go 4 days a week for another 21 days.
My point is, you will make the changes that you WANT to make when you really DESIRE it. The start and stop that most suffer from News Years Resolutions only offers guilt and a feeling of failure. So, then the person usually just “gives up” until the next very filling Thanksgiving supper. And those News Years Resolutions begin again. So, lets try something NEW this year and set a goal. Set 21 day segments of small achievable tasks. Lets become clear as to what we want, work step by small step to get to that goal. Let go of Resolutions and forgive yourself for stepping backwards.
Its OK and NEEDED in order to really push yourself forward.