The first step to creating attainable goals is reflection. Schedule some time for yourself, find a quiet place and think about the year that has passed. Think about the things and events that you loved, and those that you didn’t. Think about any areas of your life that you wish could be different. Recognise negative patterns and behaviors in yourself and determine which of these you would like to address in the coming year, and also look at things about yourself that you find to be positive. Write all of these down and use this list to formulate your resolutions and goals for the coming year.
SET SMALL GOALS
The trick for keeping those big New Year’s Resolutions is to break them down into smaller, more achievable goals. If one of your Resolutions is to exercise more, start with something small like scheduling a yoga class two times a week, or organising a weekly ‘power-walk catch-up’ with a friend. This is far more achievable than expecting to head to the gym seven days a week when you’re first starting out. If your aim is to eat healthier, try eliminating certain foods gradually rather than becoming vegan overnight. It’s the little steps towards a greater goal that make for more achievable resolutions and lifestyle changes rather than personal fads.
CHANGE ONE THING AT A TIME
Having ten different wide-ranging resolutions and breaking them down into smaller goals makes for an enormous list of changes that can seem daunting and unachievable. Writing a list of the changes you would like to make and then prioritising them by order of importance makes the task of overhauling our lives a little less stressful and identifies what we think is an imperative thing to change. Also, unhealthy behaviors aren’t things that are developed overnight. They come about after years of habitual behaviour and it takes time to eliminate a bad habit or routine from our lives. Changing one thing at a time, and allowing time and space for this change to become a part of our lives allows for long-term growth and development as opposed to quick fixes that aren’t feasible in the long run.
TELL OTHERS & ASK FOR SUPPORT
Putting our goals and resolutions out to the universe helps to solidify these goals as reality rather than just a thought. It also instills a sense of responsibility in ourselves to persevere with these changes we wish to implement and to stick it out if we falter in our determination. Having a supportive network of people around you during this transitional phase can help to ‘egg’ you on to achieve the goals you have set out for yourself, encouraging resilience and affecting positive change.