RESOLUTION: A FIRM DECISION TO DO OR NOT DO SOMETHING; THE ACTION OF SOLVING A PROBLEM, DISPUTE, OR CONTENTIOUS MATTER.
During the holiday season between November and January, the majority of our daily behaviors shift; and more likely than not, it isn’t for the better. Overindulgence on delicious, butter-soaked, sugar loaded foods, stressed over purchasing the holiday gifts everyone “needs”, end-of-the-year business crunch time, and not to mention spending the week with the in-laws. It is basically a giant pile of crappy circumstances and behaviors that keep growing and growing until you either crack under the pressure or find a reason to change…oh, wait, New Years Resolutions!
We can become a momentary kid in a candy shop with our eyes wide and drooling, imagining what we believe we will become or achieve by next December. However, sitting there googly eyed won’t get you there, so you better put on your big girl (or boy) panties and get ready to do the work.
A study conducted by the Statistic Brain Research Institute on New Years Resolution statistics for last year. Let’s take a look;
I’m going to play devils advocate and assume these were generalized answers lacking some elaboration, but I’m also a realist; you need to be overly specific when projecting what you actually want to achieve. General answers and aspirations lead to general results, be bold!
Let me dissect and connect some dots with this data quickly…
- All of the top resolutions are focused on improving the four spectrums in what I consider fulfilling and optimized life; Body, Mindset, Balance & Being
- Nearly 1/2 of the U.S. do not use the New Year to determine new goals. This is something I support as well and could take me out to left field on a long tangent, but I am extremely supportive of avoiding the use of the new calendar year as an “excuse” to set new goals or habits.
- 25% fall off the wagon within the first week of setting goals; this is because their aspirations do not align with their actions. To have a greater level of success, you need steps that progress as you do, not just a big daunting treasure map without any way to begin the journey.
- Based on these numbers, if you can maintain a resolution, the firm decision to do something, for at least one month, then you have a great chance of sticking to them for at least six months and hopefully develop those positive practices into your lifestyle.
Average People Have Great Ideas, But Legends Have Great Execution
Without going through proper preparation, you won’t be able to stick to that clear cut path you were hoping to find, and that goes for anything. If you wanted to hike part of the Adirondack Trail, but you didn’t pay attention to any trail markers along the way; leaving you lost in the deep woods without an avenue to find where you need to go.
Convincing yourself of lacking time, becoming busy, it’s too hard, losing focus of our why, or even forgetting the goals you set in the first place. Don’t let the common reasons be in your vocabulary this time around. If you want to give yourself the best possible chance to finally make a difference, rather than it blowing up in your face, take a breath, and simply do one thing at the moment that will improve your life force and ultimately improve your quality of life.
For the best chance of success, especially when it comes to goal setting, you need to be specific when projecting what you want to happen. Using blanket statements or loose parameters provide an open opportunity to negotiate with yourself on bending the rules; your willpower can only hold so strong, set up for success! Look, this is what I mean;
“I want to exercise more” vs. “I want to exercise at least 3 days a week”
“I want to lose weight” vs. “I want to drop 20 pounds and feel great.”
“I’m going to read every night” vs. “I want to read interesting and intriguing topics often”
“I want to eat better” vs. “I want to cut out my morning muffin and late night sweets”
“I want a better relationship with my partner” vs. “A few times each month have date night to better connect with my lovey-dovey-honey-bear”
“I want, I want, I want…”
We want all of these huge changes to happen without even contemplating any sort of action step, or even giving a measurable outcome benchmark! We are fixated on setting these long-term, miraculous celebrations in the back of our imagination; but that is usually all they ever become. Don’t think I’m trying to single anyone out here, I am 100% victim here too, but there are some tactics that have made a LARGE impact on my ability to stay consistent with myself, remain accountable, avoid the feeling overwhelmed by big tasks (mostly), and still enjoy each day as it comes, and they were learned from someone who inspired me to listen and act. I hope this can be my message out to you, giving that guiding hand if you may need it.
Those will be coming on a silver platter for you next week. If you want to have it hand delivered to your phone, computer or tablet, then you should sign up for the Mindful Trailrunner weekly newsletter that delivers fresh content to your mailbox! We never sell your information or spam you, because that’s not cool. Just click the link below, enter your email address and you’re done!
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