Belated happy new year! Traditionally, the new year is a time for making new resolutions, getting rid of bad habits and becoming the person we “think” we should be.
It is well-documented; however, that most of us have given up our resolutions by the end of January, never mind keeping them for a whole year!
That doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t look forward to a better future, though. Maybe you want to lose weight, eat more healthily, get that promotion or a new job. Whatever it is, you can do it and you should resolve to do it – just maybe not in the usual way, on 1 January.
Every single day that you wake up is a day to start working towards that goal or dream you want. So, if you have made a new year resolution and are starting to lose motivation or interest, don’t worry – you can still do this!
Rewire your attitude
First, you need to decide exactly what it is you want to achieve – and by when. “I want to lose weight,” is all well and good – but it lacks focus; it lacks definition. “I want to lose 5kg in eight weeks.” Now you know exactly what you want to achieve. The more specific your goal is; the easier it will be to achieve.
Resolution: “I’ll exercise more”
Goal: “I will go to a spinning class every Tuesday and go for a 3km walk three times a week.”
See the difference? These goals are specific and, therefore, it will be easier to know if you are achieving them.
Sometimes our dreams or goals can seem like a mountain that is just too high to climb.
“I’ve got three stone to lose; I’ll never do it”; “I’ll never get my dream job as I am stuck in this one!”; “It’s OK for other people, they are luckier/better looking/more popular than me.”
We are programmed to stay with what we know. It is safe and comfortable. Doing something new, learning new skills and getting out of our comfort zone all go against our most primal internal wiring. But remember: if you keep doing things the way you have always done them, then you will keep getting the same results.
If you want your situation to change, no matter what it is, you are going to have to change your behaviour.
So, how do we do this? Well, I believe we start small. Changing our behaviour in small ways can lead to big changes in our lives.
If, for example, your dream or goal is to run a marathon, a 5km (or anything in between) and you haven’t run since you were a child; you are not going to go out today to run whatever distance is your goal! No, that would be daft!
You start by taking the first step. Maybe this is finding a running plan and then starting the plan, probably with the first day being to go for a walk!
By doing that walk you have taken the first step to achieving your dream or goal. The important thing to do next is take the next step and the subsequent steps after that. Focus on the step you are taking today. The rest will come.
A plan is as important as being clear about what you want to achieve. Remember, your plan is your SatNav to your final destination. You must know where you want to go and how you are going to get there.
Lastly, get support. Trying to achieve our goals can be lonely if we do it by ourselves. Tell those closest to you what you want to do and ask them to support you. Their encouragement will help you through the tough times.
Alternatively, seek out a professional in the area you want to change and they will encourage, guide and support you too!