The way we spend our time defines who we are. Jonathan Estrin
With the new year around the corner, many of us make new year’s resolutions with the goal to improve something in our lives. Maybe you want to lose a few pounds or get more exercise. Those are the two top goals people set for the coming year.
Other resolutions include getting organized, learning a skill or hobby, quitting smoking, spending more time with family friends, traveling, or reading more and spending less money. Those are all great goals, and if you are planning on making positive changes in your life, then make a New Year’s resolution.
One study found only 19 percent of people who made these promises to themselves were successful (which also means that most of us will fail.) However, if you don’t turn your goal into a resolution, the odds are much worse (4 percent) that you’ll succeed.
Before you make any changes in your life, you must find the time to adapt to your resolution. Don’t ever complain about NOT having the time, as everyone gets 24 hours in a day, and YOU choose how you spend those precious minutes. You are the person who prioritizes your activities.
We’re not very good at time management, as much of our day is spent on activities that have little or no value (Netflix anyone?) If you are going to make a New Year’s resolution that lasts, you must make it a priority.
A recent Forbes article gave the following tips for keeping your new goals. First, make the goal actionable, and measurable. For example, instead of saying you’ll get “more exercise,” just state it as, “I’ll walk two miles five times a week.” That way, when you DO accomplish the daily goal, you will feel a sense of accomplishment and that will motivate you to continue.
A second tip is to be reasonable. Don’t decide to walk ten miles every day. It won’t happen and when you miss a day, you’ll be more inclined to just skip others because you’ve already “failed” in your resolution.
One article challenges the reader to mentally prepare for the task and to set a goal that motivates you. Don’t make big or quick changes but build on smaller steps and allow room for error. Can you break a big goal into smaller goals?
Make sure the activity is something YOU want to change, not something someone else thinks you should be doing. Does it align with your priorities or personal or career aspirations? You can’t be motivated if you’re not convinced you want to make the change for yourself.
We all know we should write down our resolutions, because if it isn’t in writing, it doesn’t exist. Use a stickie note on your bathroom mirror or send yourself an email. Make it a reminder to keep it always on your mind.
Share your goals with others who can help keep you accountable. Go ahead, post it on Facebook and document your progress. Your friends will support you and encourage you and celebrate your successes along the way.
None of us are perfect and we all stray from our chosen path, so when you get off track, just consider it a tiny setback and keep moving forward. You’re not a failure unless you quit, so get back in that saddle and stick to your goals.
The most important tip for keeping your New Year’s resolution is to make it a priority. You need to block off time or it won’t happen. Put it in your calendar. Are you someone who likes to work out in the morning or after work?
Whether you are in a truck or an office, you need to determine that you are going to cut out those calories or take those steps. Anticipate the time you’ll need and include it in your daily planning.
Remember, we all get the same amount of time each day, but YOU decide how you’ll spend it on yourself. Will you be watching Netflix or talking a walk? Good luck on your 2022 resolutions. You can be one of the successful ones!