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My amuse bouche for you today is a light “dad joke” to entertain your mind before we get down to business. Like any other amuse bouche, you may hate it, but it is worth every penny that you paid for it, right?
A New Year’s resolution is something that goes in one year and out the other.
Goal Success by Choice
Do you have dreams that you are trying to make come true? Do you have a goal that you are trying to crush? Success doesn’t happen by chance. You don’t have to get lucky or win the lottery to live the life of your dreams.
You just have to choose to be successful. If you make the right daily choices, adopt good habits and behaviors, and approach life with the right mindset, you can make your dreams come true.
Goal Success by Choice helps you make the choices that will move you closer to your goals and keep you from holding yourself back.
I hope this post helps you get a little closer to crushing your goals.
Happy New Year!?
“New Year’s Day is every man’s birthday.”Charles Lamb
Ok, I am not crazy. I know this isn’t really new years eve. But, it is a new years eve of sorts for me.
Tomorrow is my birthday.
That means today is the end of my forty-fourth year on this planet, and tomorrow begins year forty-five. I know this isn’t traditionally a “big” or milestone birthday, but this one is significant for me.
I have spent the first half of my forties working on transformation. I went through my weight loss, job change, launched a blog, published a book, did lots of internal transformation work, became an amateur athlete, saw some weight come back, became a coach and many other things. It was a busy five years for me for sure.
Now that I am turning forty-five, at least half of my life is over, and it is time to think about what comes next. It is time to revise my plan and my goals. My predicament got me thinking about the new year’s resolutions that all too many people set and fail to accomplish.
Resolving to Fail
Have you ever made New Year’s resolutions in the past? You wake up on New Year’s Day, possibly feeling not-so-hot to start your day. You have some ambitious idea of something you want to change in your life. Then, without researching what is attainable, you set a vague resolution for the upcoming year. Possible something like “I am going to lose fifty pounds this year.”
New Year’s resolutions are not a successful way to change or improve your life. The failure stats vary greatly, but one study revealed that only 8% (that is not a typo) of Americans who make New Year’s resolutions stick with them for the whole year. Further, 80% of people who make resolutions fail before February. Those stats are abysmal!
There are many reasons for the failure of resolutions, and here is a partial list of the big ones:
- They aren’t specific enough
- They focus on the negative thing you are trying to change instead of the positive future reality
- You choose a resolution that isn’t a priority for yourself, maybe to please others
- Your resolution isn’t practical or attainable
- You don’t have a plan for how you will accomplish the resolution
- You don’t believe in yourself
- You are working against how your natural wiring
This list can go on and on and adds up to a laundry list of despair.
I think one of the biggest causes of resolution failure is that it is just so arbitrary. The end of December arrives, and people set some big, vague goals that aren’t all that important to them. Then, because these goals aren’t a priority, they are quickly abandoned, partially because they feel too impersonal.
There is a better way! I will prove it with my own new year’s resolutions this year.
Because New Year’s resolutions have such a low success rate, I am proposing two upgrades to this tired, antiquated process. By leveraging these upgrades, you will give your resolutions a fighting chance at success.
These two upgrades do blow up the idea of New Year’s resolutions as a whole. I am suggesting not setting resolutions and not doing it on New Year’s Day. How’s that for blowing things up?!
Don’t Set Resolutions
The first step to upgrading your New Year’s resolutions is to stop making resolutions. A resolution implies that you are setting a goal. When setting a goal, it should be well thought out and SMART. New Year’s resolutions seldom meet this standard.
While resolutions aren’t usually successful, that doesn’t mean that deciding to improve your life is bad. It just means that it is time to tweak your approach a bit.
Instead of setting a New Year’s resolution, set an intention instead.
An intention recognizes that you aren’t ready to set a solid SMART goal quite yet, but you want to make a change. Intentions are a little more broad and open-ended. They are more direction-setting in nature versus something you plan to check off of your list. Think of intentions as being guardrails to help you focus on living a better life. They are just formal enough to give you purpose and some accountability but don’t give you the same risk or feelings of failure.
To set an intention, find the things that you love and want more of in your life. Then commit to pursuing more of those things through the upcoming year.
For example, instead of saying “I am going to lose fifty pounds this year” as a resolution, say “I am going to find new ways to live a healthier, more active lifestyle” as an intention. Then, in your morning routine, focus on affirmations and mantras to help fuel your intention.
Setting an intention doesn’t preclude you from setting related goals later. But, it gives you the strategic direction you need to help focus your tactical goals.
Don’t Do It On New Year’s Day
As I mentioned above, one of the biggest reasons resolutions fail is that they get set on an arbitrary date that isn’t personally meaningful. So, let’s stop doing that!
Instead of setting resolutions on the day of THE new year, do it on the day of YOUR new year. Set your new year’s intentions on your birthday.
Ask yourself, “what do I want age forty-five to bring to my life?” Then, once you have your list of answers, boil them down to an intention or two. Then, as your next birthday approaches, ask yourself if that age resulted in the directional changes you intended.
I know this sounds like a small change, but making your intention-setting date more personally meaningful helps you subconsciously commit to those intentions. It makes it more about you and less about simply following the crowd.
A good (and slightly petty) benefit of this is that you have a cooler answer in January when people ask you about your New Year’s resolutions. You can confidently tell them that you don’t set resolutions, but you are already months into succeeding with your intentions.
Check back next week when I share my intentions for my new year. Just a little teaser, my intentions involve doing a little personal profit-taking.
Pausing annually to resolve to make changes in your life can be a beneficial process. Unfortunately, the traditional New Year’s resolutions are a recipe for failure. Two simple game-changer upgrades can significantly increase your chances of success.
Are you ready to succeed with your next set of New Year’s resolutions? Let me help.
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