I hope you have had a wonderful Christmas period filled with love, joy and not too many mince pies. This is my final blog entry of the year and I have just been
distracted by examining the stats being churned out of our website’s back-end (*brief pause for childish giggling*) which has been telling us about what has been most popular, what has caused the most engagement with our readers and we will respond and plan accordingly….
Speaking of which…. Tomorrow is New Year’s Eve (yeah baby!) which means if you’re like most people out there, this time right now represents your final hours to point, aim, and fire your “resolutions” into 2016. Your vision board is ready, you’ve dusted off your goal writing materials, your calendar is out, and you’re pondering all the great things you’re going to accomplish in 2016…. Aren’t you?
This represents a wonderful opportunity, a time to craft, create and forge the year that you want for yourself. The end of one year and the beginning of the next is an incredibly fertile period of time. We get to let go and shake off the year that has gone by, and we get to turn a new leaf.
“Don’t Let Yesterday Take Up Too Much Of Today.” -Will Rogers
We all want to begin the New Year with the best intentions, ditching our unwanted old habits for good new ones, for example. We want to achieve goals, be productive, live a rewarding and fulfilling life, have fun, enjoy our existence and realise more of our potential once and for all!
You know what’s coming next, don’t you? Most resolutions end up as disappointment, as millions fail in the bid to achieve what they initially wanted to. A new beginning, a better ‘me’, ends up being the same old tune sung every year. A bit like when we sing ‘Auld Lang Syne’ at midnight, the first verse at full throttle, then we mutter the first few seconds of the next verse as we don’t really know the words and it sort of whimpers out as we look for someone to kiss instead…. Resolutions are the same, we strap on our shiny new gym kit for the first week of January, pumping iron every day for a whole week, then visit again once in February before our new regime whimpers out altogether.
According to researcher and psychologist Richard Wiseman from the University of Bristol, 88 percent of all New Year’s resolutions fail. That’s 156 million failed resolutions and downhearted minds each and every year! What a shame! All those dreams, all those desires, all those hopes!
So what are the reasons you are likely to fail to keep your New Year’s resolutions?
1. The Passion Is Not There:
“When you want to succeed as bad as you want to breathe, then you’ll be successful.”
― Eric Thomas, The Secret to Success
Every success begins with a decision, and the level of success following that decision will depend on your conviction to achieve your goal. When you say that you want to do something, but you don’t feel it in your gut, or deep down in your bones, then you’re setting yourself up for failure. To succeed, you need to want something so much that you’re willing to do almost anything to achieve it.
When you truly want the outcome, that desire will fuel your actions.
2. Your Resolutions Are Vague:
“What a mistake – the whole idea around New Year’s resolutions. People aren’t picking specific behaviours; they’re picking abstractions” – says BJ Fogg from Stanford University.
If your goal is vague (or too complicated in some way), then you aren’t heading in the right direction. Goals like ‘find a new job’ or ‘make more money’ don’t inspire you to take specific actions at right times and get you moving. Think about the steps you actually need to make more money and set a resolution to start doing more of that!
Get specific. Make the goal truly clear and think of it as a well-formed outcome; what do I want to accomplish? How will I know if I have achieved that? How can I measure my progress towards this resolution? What are my reasons for this resolution? Know the resolution and be precise about it. Vagueness and too much generalising will render the resolution impotent.
Learn more about the importance of clear goals:
Should We All Just Trust Our Unconscious Mind? Is it OK to Have Unclear Undefined Goals in Hypnotherapy?
3. You Have Too Many Resolutions:
So many goals, so little time. Let’s be honest, with some lists you don’t even know where to start. It’s okay to start with a big list. After you’re done writing down everything you can, prioritise based on the level of importance those goals. Now cut that list in half, prioritise again, and narrow the list down to three or less! (For example, pick your top three major goals that will truly transform your life this year, or that will result in the most happiness and satisfaction) Without all those other goals in the way, it is easier to focus all your efforts on the most important ones.
As Stanford’s Prof. Shiv explained, sticking to more than one New Year’s resolution is almost impossible for your brain to handle. Instead, analyse the things you’ve thought about to change and pick the one thing that’s most important to you. You can then start to intelligently plan and work towards it.
4. You Lack Accountability:
Research shows that being accountable for your actions will increase the chances of success for your resolutions. Some research suggests that you do not need to hold yourself accountable too publicly, just to those closest to you is usually enough and won’t put too much additional stress upon you. In addition, there is a striking correlation between increased social support and lowering blood pressure, heart rate and cortisol levels (stress hormone). When you hold yourself accountable to loved ones, they can form part of a healthy support network that can aid your progress.
It becomes easy to succeed if you’re supported by people around you. People with fitness goals seek out expert advice on how to drop their weight or get in shape. So, why wouldn’t you with your life goals? Trained Coaches are experts about life goals, holding you accountable and helping you navigate the choppy waters every step of the way!
5. You Lack Discipline:
Discipline is being able to do what you need to do, when you need to do it, whether you like it or not. For example, if you want to lose some weight, you need to be active regularly or stick to a healthy eating regimen of some kind.
Plan for problems arising with your motivation. Plan now for issues you may face in a month or two. Do you usually become less motivated about your resolutions after the first month? Think about what will drive you more in a month’s time, and plan accordingly to deal with that.
Learn more about motivation:
Letting Your Motivation Bloom and Blossom
Audio hypnosis session:
Motivation to Exercise
It is good to be able to measure progress as that will keep the fire burning. Or you might choose to reward yourself, or you might ask someone else to reward you, a member of your support network, for example.
6. You Get Caught Up In Negativity:
We can have a downward spiral into negativity if we have a bad day and decide to throw it all away focusing on only that day and not the rest of the progress made up until then. Don’t go discounting the positives of previous weeks just because you had a bad day. You might even choose to allow yourself a bad day and be ok with that.
As well as ourselves, there may well be negative people out there trying to bring you down too. If you get caught up in negativity and start to worry about your own ability or staying power, then those negative thoughts will weight heavy upon you. Instead, dwell on positive feelings and emotions you’ve created within you that are related to your goals and resolutions. Your aim is to recall the passion for the goal and use it to override the negativity. Think of the reason, have the passion behind it and then go hard at achieving it. It’s not always going to be easy, but it is so rewarding once you get there.
Write up your reasons for the goals (resolutions) on flash cards and keep them handy (in a wallet, for example) as well as having some motivational quotes at the ready to help you if you dip at certain times, and have a pep talk prepared and at the ready that you can give yourself at times of need – the same sort you’d give a loved one who needed a boost.
7. You Haven’t Got A Vision:
“If You Are Working On Something That You Really Care About, You Don’t Have To Be Pushed. The Vision Pulls You.”– Steve Jobs
You may have a vague recollection of your resolution, but it is not firmly installed in your imagination. It could be that you didn’t pay attention in the first place. It could be that you do not have a compelling notion created regarding that resolution. Bring it to life!
“Imagine Your Life Is Perfect In Every Respect; What Would It Look Like?”- Brian Tracy
You have one of the most advanced and sophisticated organisms on the planet lodged inside your head, now is the time to truly start to apply it’s abilities and strengths. Think of your outcomes and bring them to life. Make them vivid in colour, with great soundtracks and feelings that accompany it all.
Then revisit this imagined symbolic representation of your resolution every day. If you struggle with this, consider creating a ‘vision board’ or ‘dream board’ that has lots of visual stimulus that reminds you of your resolutions and makes you feel inspired when you see it; include vivid imagery, quotes, goals, people, places and really go to town with it.
Your imagination creating a vivid vision of your resolutions will make them unbelievably easier to achieve.
8. You Get The “Too Busy” Syndrome:
I refer to “too busy” as “it’s really not important enough.” It is a lame excuse.
Sometimes, people end up believing that they don’t have the time to go out and do what they want to be able to do. People can easily over-commit themselves, work multiple jobs, have families, as well as other responsibilities. It’s easy to add more to life, but it’s much more difficult to take stuff out. Do subtract more from your life and focus on the most important stuff.
Plan out your day the night before. Reduce the times you look at emails, social media, cut down meeting times, get rid of distractions and save time. Read about how to be more productive here. You will be surprised how much time you really have. Once you come to that realisation, work on your goals in ways that bring you joy and satisfaction.
9. You Resolutions Are Too Challenging:
Your resolutions end up being “too hard”. You’ve gone through the initial steps however realised that it’s going to take much more energy and effort. At this point, you start to lose the direction of what you should be doing as things start getting overwhelming, and you slowly give in. Create a plan. Map it out if you have to with all the possibilities and actions to do in order to get there.
The thing is, your resolutions and goals need to be demanding and challenging in order for them to be rewarding at all and in order for you to derive satisfaction and development from them. However, if they are too demanding, they’ll simply leave you dissatisfied and feeling incapable. Consider this when setting your goals for the year; consider the degree of challenge for each resolution and make sure it is attainable. Failing that, work towards stages of a goal whereby you get to stages that you can attain before you progress further.
The final additional reason I think people fail with their resolutions is this:
They Go It Alone:
Trying to do everything on your own is tough. There are people out there to help you with all your resolutions and I urge you to invest in yourself by enlisting the help and support of others.
Hard work is made easier, commitment flows, perseverance is more manageable, accountability is inherent, you get motivated, you get inspired, you get guidance, you become exponentially more than the sum of your parts!!
Take Action Today:
First up, read these quotes and consider what you want to achieve in 2016:
“The Way Get Started Is To Quit Talking And Begin Doing.” -Walt Disney
“Failure Will Never Overtake Me If My Determination To Succeed Is Strong Enough.”– Og Mandino
“We May Encounter Many Defeats But We Must Not Be Defeated.”– Maya Angelou
“Knowing Is Not Enough; We Must Apply. Wishing Is Not Enough; We Must Do.”– Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe
“We Generate Fears While We Sit. We Overcome Them By Action.”- Dr. Henry Link
“Security Is Mostly A Superstition. Life Is Either A Daring Adventure Or Nothing.”– Helen Keller
“The Only Limit To Our Realization Of Tomorrow Will Be Our Doubts Of Today.”– Franklin D. Roosevelt
“Do What You Can With All You Have, Wherever You Are.”– Theodore Roosevelt
“You Are Never To Old To Set Another Goal Or To Dream A New Dream.”– C.S. Lewis
“To See What Is Right And Not Do It Is A Lack Of Courage.”– Confucious
“People Who Are Crazy Enough To Think They Can Change The World, Are The Ones Who Do.”- Rob Siltanen
“The Pessimist Sees Difficulty In Every Opportunity. The Optimist Sees The Opportunity In Every Difficulty.” -Winston Churchill
As you consider 2016, and the resolutions and goals you have for yourself, take some action this day. Plan, consider, get inspired and dream big. These are the days which you will look back upon at the end of next year as having been the days that made that amazing year possible. Go for it. If 2015 did not pan out as you wanted it to, or you feel you can have done better, then maybe this year, you might benefit from some assistance…..
I’d love to invite you to join me and work together on those dreams, goals and changes that you’d like to happen in your life, take a look at the links at this foot of this article to see how you can make that happen…..
Having a truly awesome new year and attaining your new year’s resolution list requires commitment, hard work and perseverance on your part. So in order to maintain your spirit and not get discouraged or overwhelmed, do keep these nine points in mind.
I have loved having you as a regular reader in 2015 and I thank you for being part of what I do here. I hope our paths cross some more in 2016. However you celebrate the new year, in my opinion the best celebration is to live it well. Celebrate the new year by making it the best year it possibly can be…. As well as having a glass of something fizzy at midnight. Leap into 2016 my friends, I shall see you on the other side.
Have some of themes here resonated with you? Then have a read of these pages:
1. Do you need help or support in a particular area of your life?
Coaching with Adam Eason Or Hypnotherapy with Adam Eason
2. Would you like a satisfying and meaningful career as a hypnotherapist helping others? Are you a hypnotherapist looking for stimulating and career enhancing continued professional development and advanced studies?
Adam Eason’s Anglo European training college.
3. Are you a hypnotherapist looking to fulfil your ambitions or advance your career?
Hypnotherapist Mentoring with Adam Eason.
Likewise, if you’d like to learn more about self-hypnosis, understand the evidence based principles of it from a scientific perspective and learn how to apply it to many areas of your life while having fun and in a safe environment and have the opportunity to test everything you learn, then come and join me for my one day seminar which does all that and more, have a read here: The Science of Self-Hypnosis Seminar.