2018’s already been here a week. If you’re like most of the world, you left 2017 battle-scarred and numb to the general shit-show of a year it was. You also went into 2018 assuming this would be the year you’d lose 30 pounds or write the Great American Novel.
If you’re like most people, you’re doomed for failure. You might not have even made it this far. But I’m not here to tell you not to make a resolution. Instead, it’s time to make better ones.
Here’s why you’re set for failure and what you can do about it.
1. Your resolution wasn’t realistic
You wanted to run a full marathon without ever running before? Trying to pay off all your student debt in one year? Good luck.
There’s no crime against being aspirational. The issue comes when you set your sights on a goal that you have no idea how to even begin approaching. Ideally, you want a resolution that’s realistic for you to achieve, especially if it’s something you’ve never attempted.
Consider your situation. How much free time do you have to focus on your goal? Do you know what it will take to achieve your goal? Understand what you’re getting into before setting a goal.
2. You didn’t have a plan
Saying you want to achieve something is one thing. Knowing how to do it is another beast altogether.
Have a plan for how you’d approach your resolution. The more detailed the better. List out what steps you’ll need to take to meet your goal. Let’s say you’re trying to build a savings account as your resolution. You’ll want to figure out how much you’ll want to put aside. Then you’d want to review your finances and see how much you would need to budget every paycheck or month. Once you know what to do, act on it.
3. You never revisited your goal
It’s always key to review your goals and check-in on your progress. Part of why people fail is because they never do check-in or revise their resolutions as the weeks go on.
Consider your goal and your progress so far every so often. Set some time aside regularly- at least once a month. See where you’re at. If you feel like you’re not accomplishing enough, consider why. Is your goal too far out of reach? Consider dialing it back and starting smaller. Are you meeting your goals too easily? Up the stakes and strive for a harder goal.
4. You didn’t have support
Support is absolutely crucial at every step. Include your friends and family. Post on social media. Share your progress. I don’t know about you but I thrive on public pressure. Having your buddy ask how your plan to visit the gym at least twice a week is going may be the kick in the pants your gym-aspirations needed.
5. You gave up too easily
Don’t dismiss your own willpower. Sometimes the problem really is what you’re willing to put in to make your goals happen. Keep pushing. You just might surprise yourself.