When the lights and sparkle of Christmas are safely packed away in their boxes, it’s easy to feel low in January. It’s cold and damp, dark and snowy, and spring seems an awfully long way away.
However, as we all know, the brand New Year is a great time for making a fresh start. So every year millions of us make resolutions. The most common ones are:
- Lose weight and get in shape
- Save more money
- Give up smoking
- Drink less
Have you made any of these before or planning to make them this year? Have you made them and broken them?
There is nothing to be ashamed of in failing, as long as you don’t give up! So here are our tips for making this the year you keep all your resolutions.
- Don’t make too many. Limit yourself to three. It’s so much more difficult to make changes when you’re trying to make several at once – think about decorating your house; doing one room at a time is easier than doing the whole place at once. Try not to make all of your resolutions big ones.
- Be specific. “Lose weight” is all very well and good, but what does it mean? What is your target weight – make achieving that weight your New Year’s resolution. Having a specific target makes it easier and you will also actually know when you’ve managed it.
- Break it down. Figure out how you’re going to achieve each goal, step by step. Keep an eye out for our upcoming blog on creating actionable goals.
- Make it about you. You will never stick to a goal you don’t care about, so don’t resolve to lose weight or buy a house if these aren’t things that concern you. Think about what you really want to do and don’t be influenced by your friends or the media. What would make you happier and improve your life? Resolve to do that!
- Don’t give up. So you eat half your birthday cake or have a cheeky cigarette at a party or splurge on a new computer when you ought to be saving. These are slips – they are not reasons to give up! Don’t use a slip as an excuse to stop trying. Resolve not to do it again.
- Picture it. When you’re tempted to give us – to miss the run that’s part of your marathon training, or eat that second slice of cake – picture yourself having achieved your goal. See yourself running across the finish line or sliding into that new pair of trousers and remember that the feeling you’ll have when you do that will be the best feeling!
Be gentle with yourself. We are all only human and therefore imperfect. You will slip up, you will fall off the wagon. But your strength lies in carrying on – that is where the real change will occur.