It’s very easy to make new resolutions, especially at the start of a new year. Whether you want to lose weight or whether you want to be a faster athlete, your outcome depends on what you have fixed at the start of a new year, right? Actually, making resolutions into reality is hard work.
The secret of getting ahead is getting started.
Most new year’s resolution falls apart in the first 3-4 weeks. Do you know why? Surprisingly it’s not because of your lack of willpower or some other excuses but actually most of the times they are pretty vague.
We tend to avoid setting realistic goals and instead say things like, “I want to be fitter” or “I want to quit smoking”, which don’t have any specific objective at the end. For many of us, making resolution acts as a diversion for a few days or weeks, until it gets hard and we quit eventually.
This doesn’t just apply to New Year’s resolutions only. Whenever you make a to-do list, sign up for a challenge or a race- you are setting goals. To succeed, you have to make sure that those resolutions are goals, not dreams. Unfortunately, most of us live in the dream world with no realistic road-map which can turn the dreams into reality.
It sounds harsh but in this way, we tend to avoid accountability for our own progress. An undefined intention means we don’t feel like a failure when we quit or don’t complete it. This is the reason why we get stuck in the comfort zone.
Do you want to achieve your resolutions? Here’s how to define your goal and turn them into reality.
Make your goals absolutely specific
When I say specific, I mean very SPECIFIC. It should have a tangible outcome and a well-defined plan to get there.
Instead of saying “I want to start running.” try “I want to run for 10 minutes every day in the morning”. Like my current goal is to break the 20 min barrier for the 5k run. When you aim such way, you tend to get results faster than usual.
Make it measurable
This is another thing that lots of people don’t consider. Whatever is your resolution, you have to create a system to quantify its’ progress. This will help you how well you’re doing, how much your efforts are aligned with your expectations etc. the only way you can do it by setting yourself a deadline.
Say it aloud
Whatever is your resolution, let others know about it. There’s no benefit keeping things inside your chest. The more you publicly announce your goals, the higher your chances of success as more people will support you and give you the proper encouragement.
Create short-term and daily goals
To convert resolutions into reality, compare your daily actions with your milestones and figure out whether this is feasible or realistic enough to serve your purpose. For example, if you have 30 minutes in the morning to train, use a calendar and put your planned sessions accordingly. Evaluate your progress daily and set a milestone at around 6 weeks to evaluate your daily progress into overall realistic progress.
Create a structure, not in random order
This is another thing I find too often. Most of us are time-crunched so whatever we plan to do, we need structure it. Doing random workouts may make you feel good but it won’t help you in the bigger scenario. Before you invest your precious time into something, ask yourself, “Does this action will help me attain my goal?”. If slogging in the gym or doing a workout doesn’t take you closer to your goal, don’t include it.
Patience is key
We all want quick results but unfortunately, growth happens in phases. If you want to go from a non-runner to a marathon runner, you can’t expect that to happen overnight. For such resolution, you need to keep at it and follow structure as I have mentioned above.
Also, you may need to change your habits or customs to be successful in the long run. That is the danger time, as most likely you will want to see immediate results to validate those changes. I see many people go back to their previous habits and stall their progress consequently.
Plan for obstacles along the way
It becomes very apparent that once you set yourself some sort of goal, the obstacles keep popping up. They can be in various forms in terms of physical, mental, social, work-related and so on. When you set a resolution, try to analyze what sort of obstacles might hamper you or even force you to quit.
Not all obstacles can be predicted but the more you make your homework and outline solutions to handle those obstacles, the more you’re likely to succeed. For example, I try to make my training flexible so that even if I miss any of my scheduled workouts through fatigue or injury, I can compensate for that in a different way.
Positive mindset turns resolutions into reality
Negativity takes away a lot of energy. You have to remember that negativity and failure are two separate things altogether. The fact is our minds are so powerful in terms of shaping our lives. When you visualize yourself as a stronger, healthier and happier person, you feel a noticeable change within you. You are what you think inside, so be positive, gracious and appreciate yourself and the people around you for your success.
Be persistent after failure
Not everything goes according to plan so it’s usual to have any disruptions. Take them as temporary breaks rather than feeling like a failure. When you take it as a failure, more often than not you’ll feel inferior and unable to inspire yourself.
I failed many times in my quests. The more I failed, the more I picked myself up and tried again. That is the mindset which is going to build your confidence. Fear of failure is one of our biggest drawbacks, don’t be.
Pair up with someone
When someone shares your journey, the process becomes more rewarding. Whether it’s a coach or friend, share your progress with them and try to plan accordingly. When you feel like deviating from the plan, they can help you back on track. Whenever you try to change a bad habit, talk to someone who can inspire you. Make your actions accountable with someone of whom you can depend upon.
Celebrate the wins
It’s easy to focus on the failure rather than successes. Whenever you turn your resolution into reality, celebrate them with your friends and family. Every celebration will bolster your confidence and create positive momentum for you. All you need to do is to keep the domino effect going and soon you’ll be addicted to success. Turning resolutions into reality will be second nature for you.
Differentiate the SHOULD from the WANT
Last but not the least, make your resolutions that you WANT to do, not what you NEED to do. If you are doing something from peer pressure then don’t, it won’t work. If you want to turn your resolutions into reality, you really need to be doing those for yourself. When you are spontaneous about your goals, no effort seems bigger and can subdue you in your quest.
Feeling confident about your resolutions? May you convert your resolutions into reality. I would love to hear your progress. Let me know if I can be of any help.
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