Ahhhh, the Holiday Season is upon us and the New Year is right around the corner. With January 1st approaching, you know what comes next: the New Year’s Resolution. I can almost guarantee that we all know someone who is waiting for the New Year just to start working on something for self-improvement, whether it be a fitness goal or maybe to spend less money eating out. But how many of these resolutions make it past March, April, or even halfway through the year in June? According to Forbes, the University of Scranton research team conducted a study that showed only 8% of those who start the New Year with a resolution succeed at fulfilling that goal.
So let’s break it down a little better: approximately 8/100 people succeed at meeting their resolution goals, leaving 92 people who have failed to succeed at just that. To me, that percentage has the potential to grow, but only if we approach our goal setting from the right angle. It may be in part that some of us just don’t know how to set attainable goals and try to shoot for the moon on the first try. This isn’t something to hang your head about (I’ve shot for the moon many times and failed significantly, both in school and sports), because failure is something we need to learn from and take value from in order to better ourselves. I’ve come up with a few tips on what has helped me fulfill my New Year’s Resolutions in the past. If I can carry even one of these goals through the full year, I feel as though I have bettered myself for the long run.
- Clearly write out your goals (But make sure they are realistically attainable!!)
Take half an hour of your evening, grab a notebook, and clearly write down what you want to get better at in 2017. However, make sure these are goals you can realistically meet! We don’t want to set ourselves up for failure before we even start the process!
- Give a copy of your goals to someone close to you
I can almost guarantee that if you went up to your mom, dad, girlfriend, boyfriend, wife, husband, or anyone who provides a significant impact on your life, they will be more than happy to help hold you accountable with your goals because they see you trying to better yourself and will want to contribute to your process!
- Hang up a copy of your goals in a place you look everyday
Think of a place that you look every single day. I can name one for almost everybody: your cell phone. After you write your goals out, take a picture of your piece of notebook paper and set it as your lock screen. This is a place you’re going to look every single day with your goals staring straight back at you.
I found this note in my dad's bathroom cabinet a while back. This is a place he is reminded of his goal every day of the year. "When I let go of what I am, I become what I might be."
- If getting fit is your goal, find a workout partner that you can trust.
This one tends to be tough for a lot of people. If getting fit is something on your list for 2017, then we can help you (Check out our PRx Workout of the Week for weekly motivation). But we can only do so much because we are not actually there with you. Lacking motivation happens to everyone at times, so you need that workout buddy who will keep pushing you even when you want to give up. Find someone you trust, and tell them face-to-face: I want to get fit in 2017, and I want you along for the ride.
- Set a calendar reminder on your phone for June and see where you are at with achieving your goals.
Take 30 seconds out of your day, go to the calendar on your phone, and set a reminder sometime in June saying “We’re halfway through 2017, where am I at with my goals? Is it time to reread them?” If you get through the first question of “where am I at with my goals?” without hesitation, then props to you for getting this far. But there’s still 6 months to go!! If you are unsure about where you stand in achieving your goals, it’s time to go back and reread them if you are serious about self-improvement, because 6 months is still long enough to better yourself.
I hope you can take at least one of these tips away and apply it your own process of achieving your New Year’s Resolution. I’m a firm believer in, “You shouldn’t need a new year in order to set your goals.” But some people just need a fresh start to things, and January 1st is a great time to do just that. I’m going to leave you with one last thing:
Be a part of that 8%.