Keep resolving to improve

Spring is very quickly approaching. It already seems that the New Year, along with our new-year resolutions are but a distant memory. What went wrong? Don’t worry, you are not alone. Studies show us that up to 50 percent of adults in the United States, make New Year’s resolutions each year, yet fewer than 10 percent actually keep them for more than a few months. For me, new-year resolutions are a gimic; instead I prefer to set myself short-term realistic goals throughout the year. This way, I continue to motivate myself, monitor my progress along the way and feel good.

Plan to succeed

Whatever resolutions you have, be they improve your fitness, lose weight, quit smoking or learn a language, the basic principles to succeed are the same.

In this post, I wanted to expand on a previous article I wrote titled: Riding the Motivational Wave. In this I shared some ideas I have used to keep myself motivated over years. Below I summarise the top five tips I feel will help you get the results desire:

1. Define exactly your desired goal

Ask yourself what are you hoping to acheive; although try to be realistic otherwise you are destined to fail. If you constantly set yourself goals which cannot be met, you are subcontiously expecting to fail.

2. Setting a reasonable timeframe

When do you hope to meet this goal? Sometimes it is best to chose a major event in your life such as a wedding or perhaps a summer holiday (or perhaps when lockdown finishes). Otherwise setting an arbitrary date will tempt you to extend it, ad infinitum.

3. The journey

What are the steps to acheive this goal? Can you break this down into manageble short-term objectives? This approach will allow you to see progress and help to keep you motivated over the duration. There may be obstacles along the way, but try to keep mindful of your end-game.

4. Measure progress

How are you going to measure progress? Try to quantify success. If it is to drink less, by how much exactly? If it is to get fitter, in what way – run a given distance, or faster?

Try to think of ways to reward yourself once a short-term objective has been met. Make sure the objective is pushes you however, otherwise the end-goal becomes unreachable.

5. Look for support when needed

Support can come in many ways. Whether it be commitment through sponsorship, words of encouragement from an influential person(s) or a coach/personal trainer. For me, I sometimes bring pride into the equation; by announcing to anyone who will listen of my intended goal, I feel obligated to succeed.

As they say, the path to true happiness is pleasure and purpose, in equal measure. There are always ways to add purpose to your life and become a better version of yourself. Sometimes you just need a bit of motivation by tapping into your inner resolve.

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