I think most of us will have made the odd New Year’s Resolution. We see a shiny, bright New Year on the horizon and we make an iron clad list of all the things we’d like to do/not do. The New Year starts and we stand firm in our determination to stick to our resolutions. As January fades into February, and February melts into March our resolve begins to disintegrate and all the changes we wanted to make lay in a heap, discarded in favour of old habits. And we comfort ourselves with the fact that hey, there’s always next year.
But what if we could throw a spanner in to our metaphorical habit machine? What if we could make this year awesome without the New Year resolutions? Sound good? Here’s how:
How To Have An Awesome New Year Without Making Resolutions
1) Create habits not resolutions. A resolution, no matter how well intentioned, is nothing more than a wish. We want our lives to be different so we grasp at the New Year and resolve to make this year the year we make positive changes. But as the newness of the year fades, as does our resolve. Instead of trying, and inevitably failing, to stick to your resolutions try forming new habits instead. Focus on each new habit, give it all your attention. Give yourself a month for each new habit to become second nature, then try another one. Just think, after a year you could be basking in the glory of twelve new habits!
2) Don’t bite off more than you can chew. At the start of a New Year it’s tempting to try to make huge changes to our lives, changes that can take a year or more to achieve. Try splitting these big changes into manageable chunks. Don’t try to diet, quit smoking, start a keep fit routine, get a new job and move house all at the same time – you’ll burn out your resolve ( and your sanity). Michelangelo didn’t attack a slap of marble on the 1st of January in a determined effort to create the statue of David by week’s end. It takes time and determination to evolve, so don’t put too much pressure on yourself. Every positive change, no matter how small, is a success.
3) Be committed. It’s all too easy to write a resolution on a piece of paper, start the year off with good intentions and then quit when the going gets tough. What if you made a commitment instead of a resolution? What if you had to put £100 in a jar every time you fell of the waggon of change? Would you stick you your new habit then? Of course you would, because you would be completely committed. Try to find a way to be committed to the changes you wish to make in your life and your new habits will stick.
4) Failure doesn’t mean that you have failed. Don’t get discouraged if you don’t stick to your new habits, you have not failed. Failure is not evidence that you can’t change; it’s merely evidence that the changes you have made to your life need tweaking. Failure is a way to learn from your mistakes, try to see every success and every failure as a new way to evaluate your approach to change. Be flexible in you attitude and you’ll be able to accept and adapt to the obstacles and disruptions that life may throw your way.
5) Find support. We can all achieve amazing things on our own, but some of us will be far more successful, far faster with support. Share your plans for change with other, likeminded people. People who are hoping to make similar changes, people who will cheer you on when you succeed, people who will hold you accountable. Relish the support you gain and the support you give – and stay on track together.
Whatever you are hoping to achieve in your life, I hope this fresh new year is your year! Do leave me a comment and let me know what you have planned.