RESOLUTION TO REALITY – 5 TIPS FOR REAL NEW YEAR’S CHANGE
RESOLUTION TO REALITY - 5 TIPS FOR REAL NEW YEAR'S CHANGE
Become who you are
The champagne has been drunk, the midnight kisses have been had and the party dresses have been stashed away. The chapter that was the year 2016 has come to a close and for many of us, the start of a new year heralds a chance to start afresh. To make good on the resolutions and aspirations that fell by the wayside in the year gone by and, in some way or another, to be better than we were last year.
Nothing evokes the feeling of new beginnings and fresh starts like the morning of January 1st. The resolutions are fresh and the motivation is strong. But for many, by the end of February, those goals that seems so pressing and urgent at the start of the year become second-class priorities that end up on the back burner, only to be dusted off again come December 31st. One survey indicated that only a paltry 8% of people are successful in achieving their resolutions. Which means that the vast majority of people don’t actually follow through with their intentions to better themselves. A depressing statistic, if you ask me.
"A goal without a plan is just a wish."
- Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
With the first week of 2017 already in the rear-view mirror and most of us having resumed our regular scheduled programming, here are 5 tips to help you keep those resolutions.
1. Set realistic goals
Whatever your goal is, whether to get a better job or to get healthy, set goals that are actually attainable. In a reasonable timeframe, anyway. Don’t aspire to be the CEO by the end of the year if you’ve only just started at the company. And it’s highly unlikely that you’ll win a Grammy if you haven’t recorded an album. Be pragmatic about your goal-setting. You’re only setting yourself up for disappointment by setting outlandish goals.
2. Have a plan
You’ve set your goal. Fantastic! Now what? Well don’t just sit there and wait for it to realize itself. Figure out all the steps that you will need to take to accomplish that goal and create a plan. If your goal is to publish your first book, you’ll need to write it first. How much time a day will you need to write? How much time will you need to edit? Will you self-publish or get a traditional publisher? Will you pitch your book to publishers or will you get an agent? Having a plan will allow you to have a better idea of what it will take to get from where you are now to actually reaching your goal. As the saying goes, “success doesn’t just happen. It’s planned for”.
3. Be consistent
After putting your plan into motion, consistency is key. Your plan will be no good unless you actually stick to it. Most resolutions go unrealized because as the year progresses, motivation starts to wane. And motivation and consistency go hand in hand. You know how skipping one day at the gym can turn into skipping a whole week. And before you know it, you’ve stopped going all together. Staying committed to your goals means doing what it takes even when you don’t feel like it. Stay consistent.
4. Be flexible
Not with your goals. But with your methods. If you’ve set your goals, you’ve created your plan and you’ve been consistent to a fault and you have no progress to show, it probably means that you need to go back to the drawing board and tweak the plan. Sometimes we get things right on the first try, but more often than not it is through trial and error that we learn what works and what doesn’t. There isn’t only one route to any given destination. Likewise, there isn’t only one way to achieve a goal. Know when it’s time to switch things up.
5. Hold yourself accountable
It’s a curious thing how much effort you put into building someone else’s dream. You show up for work on time. You stay late. You work weekends. But when it comes to your own dreams, you’ll find every excuse in the book to slack off. Once you’ve stopped holding yourself accountable for slacking off, it’s a slippery slope that often leads to unrealized aspirations. Stop letting things slide. If you don’t take your own goals seriously, no one will. Be resolute in your pursuit of happiness.
One week down, fifty-one to go. Make them count.
Alicia is a full-time writer/blogger and aspiring multi-hyphenate. Born in Toronto and raised in Jamaica, she now calls Montreal home. With a background in Broadcast-Journalism and a passion for inspiring through her writing, Alicia enjoys writing and creating content for the millennial woman. You can read more of her work at www.aluestory.com.