New year resolutions are a great way to improve your lifestyle. It helps you recollect the previous year, implement the lessons learned and become a better version of yourself. While you may be determined to achieve your new year’s resolution, life sometimes gets in the way. As a result, you find yourself back at square one.
But, don’t worry! You are not the only one who is experiencing a setback. According to reports, approximately 25% of people broke their resolutions within the first week. Furthermore, only 8% of the people accomplish their new year’s resolutions.
Understand that nobody is perfect. That’s why the chances of success and failure are always 50-50. To put it simply, even if you don’t succeed on the first attempt, it does not mean you shouldn’t try again. That’s why in this article, we’ll discuss the ways in which you can restart your new year’s resolution. So, let’s begin!
- Use Your Setbacks To Improvise Your Goals
Understand that healthy goals are flexible. You must foresee the possibility of a slip-up and try to prevent it. If not, you must learn from the setback and include it in your goals.
For instance, if your resolution is to create a routine of reading books after work, you might be able to keep up with this for a few days or weeks. However, it’s expected that you might not be able to read your book due to a family commitment or urgent office meeting. In such a situation, you might consider your resolution to be “broken,” which will affect your confidence to resume working on the set goal.
That’s what happens in most cases. Psychologically, this situation is known as the “Abstinence Violation Effect.” If the effect is strong, it can further lead to negative emotions such as guilt, shame, hopelessness, loss of control, or a sense of failure.
In order to avoid such setbacks, you must anticipate the scenarios or reasons you might not be able to complete the routine. On understanding, try to incorporate the setbacks into the goals as exceptions and reduce the chances of any slip-up derailing your plans.
- Forecast Your Future Plans
You might agree that it is easier to resolve something one is intended to do instead of something one is reluctant about. In simple terms, envisioning what you will surely do increases the chances of accomplishing a task associated with it.
Several studies have also shown that people who align their goals with the task they usually perform are more likely to succeed. So, you must also forecast your future plans and align the set objectives accordingly.
Tip: While envisioning what you will do, try to break your goals into small and attainable targets. As you continue to achieve your targets, your confidence will increase, eventually helping you succeed.
- Seek Social Support To Become More Accountable
Research has shown that you are more likely to accomplish your goals if you articulate them to someone close (family or friends). Sharing your thoughts and progress helps improve focus on desired outcomes. There are a number of reasons why this method is practical and effective.
Firstly, humans fear the thought of feeling embarrassed or admitting their shortcomings. Thus, they work harder to overcome the flaws. Secondly, sharing your dreams gives the motivation to prove your determination. The sense of camaraderie acts as a push to restart your journey from where you left.
If you are not comfortable with the idea of talking about your future plans with anybody, you can write it down. Believe it or not, writing down your goals and aspirations will help hold you accountable for your actions. Thus, you will try your best to accomplish them.
- Prepare Yourself For The Change
Habits or behaviour patterns are not easy to change. More often than not, people’s efforts go in vain because they are hesitant to change. Therefore, before you begin to create or amend your resolution, you need to prepare yourself for all the changes that it’ll bring along.
Needless to say, it is easier said than done.
But, by paying attention to the logical aspect of change, listing down the pros and cons, and focusing on attainable outcomes, you will be able to prepare yourself.
In fact, a few studies have shown that resolution in itself is not challenging. It is the psychological mechanism that often causes hindrance. If it seems necessary, you can also make minor adjustments to the goals to make them more attainable.
For instance, if you are not able to read in the evening, you can make time in the morning or afternoon. Such basic adjustments will ensure that you complete everyday tasks instead of withdrawing from them.
- Don’t Beat Yourself Up.
As mentioned above, nobody’s perfect. One day you might accomplish your goal without any disruption. While, the other day, you might not feel motivated enough, and that’s perfectly fine. You need not beat yourself up for such issues. Minor missteps or slip-ups are completely normal when you are working on yourself. However, you need to ensure that these slip-ups don’t become habitual.
Also, ask yourself what you have learned so far or what you wish to change more. Such questions will increase self-awareness and improve your vision.
Wrapping It All Up!
Whether your goal is to finish a book in a week or to improve your social skills, it is essential that you start taking baby steps. Don’t expect that your behavior will change within a few days. Instead, after breaking your resolution, remind yourself to restart. As Nido Qubein has said:
“Your present circumstances don’t determine where you can go. They merely determine where you start.”