New years resolution have garnered a bad reputation for being unreliable and not living up to their expectations.
And so instead we call them goals or intentions (or whatever else we can come up with). But as Shakespeare said ‘a rose by any other name would smell just as sweet’. We call it something else but it’s really not that different.
When you get down to the crux of it it’s simply just something that answers the question, ‘What would you like to do this year?’
After setting new years goals at the beginning of the year, February is the perfect time to check in.
Perhaps, your goal was to learn to prepare some new dishes so you bought a few recipe books. However, after a few weeks you’ve found that you’d prefer to do it in a group setting. The solution could be to join an online cooking class instead.
Or maybe you joined the gym but have now found you prefer exercise in the form of walking, running, cycling and online yoga classes instead.
After 31 days it might not be that your goals have changed completely but instead that you’ve found a different way and maybe/perhaps a better one.
Happy New Year!
It’s gotten to a point where many people shun new years resolutions (goals, plans, intentions etc.). They assume they won’t last so don’t see the point in bothering.
A common example of a new years resolution is to lose weight.
After indulging in an abundance of rich and unhealthy food over the festive period a large amount of people rush to the gym in January hoping to losing weight. However, I think the reason this tends to fail time and time again is because it actually works a little better when the focus is on the action instead of the outcome.
What if your new years resolution was to create a weekly exercise routine that you enjoy and then stick to it?
As much as it is important to have a clear goal, if you’re more focused on the end result than what is required to achieve it, you’ll probably end up giving up.
We often unknowingly run from doing the work that is required because we’re more focused on thinking about what we want than carrying out the actions to get us there.
Focusing on the action tends to result in habit building. Once these habits are ingrained into your routine they eventually become part of your everyday life which makes reaching the goal much easier.
As the year begins comes to a close now is the perfect time to tie up any lose ends so you can start fresh in the new year.
For me that includes going over my goals and reflecting on what I was able to achieve, what I need more time to work on and what I’m no longer interested in doing.
Once that’s done, I’ll move on to thinking about what I’d like to do for the year ahead.
It also important to remember that even if you didn’t manage to do everything on your list, there are plenty of things you did this year that weren’t apart of your goals. To combat this it can also be useful to note down achievements or highlights at the end of each month. That’ll provide a fuller picture of all that you managed to do because it’s easy to forget.
Have a look at the goals you set for the year. Go through them one by one and check in to see how things are going. Below are a few ideas to assist with a mid-year goals check-in:
What have you made progress with?
Go through your goals and think about how far you’ve gotten with the plans you made. Perhaps you wanted to try a new recipe each month which you’ve stuck to. Maybe you’ve surpassed that goal and been trying two new recipes a month. When it comes to goals, sometimes you end up overachieving without even realising because it’ something you enjoy or it’s become ingrained in your lifestyle that it now requires less effort.
What no longer resonates?
Maybe in December/January when you were setting your goals you came up with things that simply so longer resonate’. It could be a particular number of countries you wanted to travel to but now you’re focusing on other things. As much as it’s great to achieve you goals, I also think it’s important to know when let them go. If not, you end up holding on too a bunch of things that take time and energy away from what things that still matter to you.
What do you need to start focusing on?
Sometimes there are things that you planned to but have not yet made time for. However, taking the time to reflect means you can make a plan of action on how to begin. Maybe the goal was to read 12 books for the year but half way through 2021 you’ve only managed to read two. You might now decide that in order to reach the goal or at least make better progress you will read a minimum of X pages per day or join a book club.
Doing this reflection allows you to refresh your mind and refocus your energy in order to prioritise what you’re still interested in working towards. You’ll more than likely find that you’ve done more than you thought. However for the things you’re yet to begin, just because you have not yet started doesn’t mean you don’t have enough time. it’s better to start and make a little progress than to do nothing at all
We are currently in the period where your new years resolutions may have fallen away and you’re now back to your normal (pre new years resolution) self.
It’s a common thing, it happens to everyone at some point, I’m certain.
It can get frustrating to feel like the person you thought you’d become this year might not be as feasible as you thought.
But a helpful thing to do is remind yourself that although it’s feasible it will never be as easy as simply wanting it.
So often we commit to the end goal but not what it takes to get there.
Go through your 2020 goals or resolutions and ask yourself what have I done to make this happen?
If you haven’t made much progress, chances are the answer will be nothing.
It could be helpful to reassess your goals and think not only about what you want but what you’re willing to work for.
It’s now a full week after New Year’s Day.
How are you goals, resolutions or plans coming along?
You might find that after 7 days you’re still enthusiastic and motivated or you might have found that you’ve lost steam.
If you resonate with the latter then it might be useful to ask yourself why?
Why after such a short period of time are you no longer committed or dedicated to the things that you were overflowing with excitement about less than a dozen days ago.
This could be the perfect time to call yourself out and acknowledge that the new year was not enough to change you into a brand new version of you.
There’s nothing wrong with that, in fact I’d say that’s the case for most of us.
Forming new habits or committing to new projects isn’t easy when you’re used to doing things a different way. And so the challenge or the work is to find a way of implementing new habits that works for you.