Resolutions for A New Year
Well Friends, here we are at the end of another year. The end of a year means the beginning of a new one. I love the New Year with its promise of hope and the chance to begin afresh. It’s a chance to embrace renewal in all aspects of our lives. There is great reward and joy when we strive to improve and be the best version that God intended us to be. The New Year is a chance to press “restart”. It’s a time for resolutions, a chance to re-conceptualize your life and the improvements you’d like to focus on.
Jodie and I always get excited to make resolutions. But our lists aren’t full of crazy, impossible-to-achieve goals. Instead, we like to be REAL. We don’t want the enormity or impossibility of our resolutions to discourage progress.
I want to share with your what I’ve learned from years of making resolutions. I’ve learned a lot from my successes as well as my failures. The more pitfalls you can avoid the better your chances of attaining your goals and creating space for real JOY in your life.
“Success is the result of perfection, hard work, learning from failure, loyalty, and persistence.” Colin Powell
Here are my tips for making resolutions and succeeding at them!
- Be realistic in your goals. Unattainable goals are too overwhelming.
- Set short-term goals in addition to your long-term goals.
- Progress not Perfection
- Celebrate small victories
- Track your progress to stay accountable.
- Have a buddy to help you stay accountable.
- Prepare for setbacks.
Let’s delve a little deeper
Tip #1: Be realistic in your resolution setting.
Unattainable goals are just that, unattainable. If you are too overwhelmed you will feel defeated as soon as you fall short. For example, if you haven’t exercised in a year and have never been a runner the goal of running a marathon might be unrealistic. Be realistic with the constraints of your life, the components that cannot be altered. Plan ahead taking into consideration all these component,s and you increase your chances for success.
Tip #2: Set short-term resolutions in addition to your long-term resolutions.
It’s important to have short-term resolutions that are attainable along the road. If all you see is the LONG road ahead you are more likely to get discouraged and give up. For example, my ultimate goal is to run a marathon, but I don’t just leave it at that. My short-term resolutions are the rungs on the ladder that lead me to my ultimate destination of running a marathon.
- Begin running training 3 days a week.
- Join a running club.
- Run a 5K in March.
- Increase training to 4 days a week.
- Run a 10K in June.
Tip #3: Progress not perfection: stay positive
It’s important to focus on progress in order to keep your motivation. Check your attitude daily. Be good to yourself and look at what you’ve done right, not just where you’ve fallen a bit short. Measure your improvements and be your own cheerleader. You’ll stay the course longer when you stay positive.
Tip #4: Celebrate small victories
Attitude is everything. One great way to actively focus on the positive is to concentrate on the small achievements and really celebrate them. When you are on the road to success you’ll want to stay there. Anything great takes work and continued commitment. The difference between success and failure is not getting discouraged and simply staying the course. This is harder than we all realize, but imperative. Celebrating your small victories can go a long way to staying positive.
Tip #5: Track your progress to stay accountable
Keep a journal or planner and record your progress toward your resolutions. Experts all agree that no matter what your goals, staying accountable is imperative. Back to our running example: Have a journal or planner where you record when you run, how far you go, your times (if you are working on speed). Record it all. I find I run farther and faster when I know I want to be able to write it down at the end of the day. It’s the same with dieting. Keeping a food journal is recommended by many dieting and nutrition experts. Not only does it help you stay motivated to keep to your goals during the day it is an important tool to see your progress (or where you need to improve).
Tip #6: Have a buddy to help you stay accountable
It’s essential to speak your resolutions as well as write them. Tell someone. Enlist their help and support. The best case scenario is to find a friend who wants to travel the road with you. Sharing progress, challenges, hurdles can make all the difference. Choose a friend to share it all with so you can be each other’s cheerleader.
Tip #7: Prepare for setbacks.
You are human. So you are going to hit setbacks. If you didn’t you wouldn’t be human! If you expect perfection you will be disappointed, discouraged and may abandon your journey altogether. Know you will face pitfalls and be prepared to get right back up, dust yourself off, and start up again.
“Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.” Winston Churchill
No matter what your resolutions are, whether you want to attain a new level of fitness, meet your new goal weight, succeed in a new business, teach yourself or your children a new skill…whatever they may be, how you go at it will determine whether you achieve success or you abandon your goals by mid-February. Don’t let another year go by without proving to yourself that you can realize your goals.
Want to start your journey right now? Comment on this post and tell us your resolutions for 2017. Jodie and I would LOVE to hear your resolutions for 2017! Let us be your witness and help you begin your commitment to attaining your goals.
Or read our next post “Organize Your Life” for a little more guidance on how to get started.
Cheers to Your Success!
With love, Julie & Jodie