Hello Fellow Travellers,
It is that time of year again. We are all shoring up the gains and losses of the past year, and considering what changes we want to invite into our lives for 2015.
Have you ever been niggled and haunted by the New Year Resolution from the previous year that you didn’t keep? (You have? Join the club.) The fact is, keeping a resolution is challenging, because it involves changing behaviour patterns. Since 50% of our lives consist of adhering to routine patterns of behaviour, it’s not surprising that we sometimes find creating new behaviours a major difficulty. Of course, we all have willpower, but we have it in limited amounts, which are always subject to environmental factors (that is, personal and work pressures etc.).
It is important to respect the challenges before we get stuck into them, while simultaneously being gentle with ourselves. So like Ol’ Blue Eyes sang – ‘..take things Nice n’ Easy …’ Prepare your goals carefully BEFORE you make them. Follow these 5 Easy Steps to Success:
Focus on achieving your short list of targets incrementally – avoid overloading yourself with objectives. Set yourself one goal. When you have it in-the-bag, set another one: work through your goals one at a time.
Make your 1st goal a Small Smart Speedy target that you can achieve in 28 days – like taking the stairs for 1-2 floors instead of the lift. Achieving this will boost your confidence for the next goal.
Learn from the best, like Stephen Covey (author of 7 Habits of Highly Effective People). Go for a Goal that will deliver the biggest payoff. Pledging to change or create a new behaviour takes diligence, commitment and guts, so choose a resolution that has a high level of significance for you.
Increase the likelihood of success by honing down to the core-value behind the goal. Create a few themed questions focused on the outcome:
E.g. I want to go to the gym twice a week.
Q1 When I go to the gym twice a week what will that get me?
A1 a better physique.
Q2 when I have a better physique what will that get me?
A2 better health.
Q3 when I have better health what will that get me?
A3 a better foundation for all my personal relationships because I know I’ll be around longer to enjoy the people that I love and care about most.
‘Drilling down’ to the core-value will help to motivate you, and give you clarity of purpose.
Reward yourself for effort. Forgive yourself if you falter. You gain nothing but emotional bruises when you beat yourself up. You are much greater than your setbacks, so evaluate, re-evaluate and start over, if you have to. Determination and gentleness are not mutually exclusive things, so embrace your human, fallible self.
Remember Ol’ Blue Eyes – ‘…Nice n’ Easy Does It Every Time.’