Why Resolutions Work… Or Not

It’s that time of the year.  A time when many of us turn to new beginnings, fresh starts, and renewed emphasis on the things that we really want.  Statistically speaking, over 50% of us will set a New Year’s Resolution this year.  It’s pretty amazing when you think about it.  But what’s even more amazing is that research also shows that 88% of us will fail to follow through on our resolutions.  We’ll just abandon them.  What?  That means failure and disappointment are going to be served up to 9 out of every 10 of us!  Are we really that flaky?  What’s the reason for this, and is there a way to increase our success rate?

Why Resolutions Fail

Following through on our New Year’s Resolutions requires one thing mainly, and that’s WILLPOWER.  The greater your willpower, the more successful you’ll be at every endeavor you pursue.  You’d think we’d have plenty of it.  At least a lot more than only one out of ten of us.  So why the super high failure rate?  It all comes down to the way that we FOCUS on the actual efforts we make.  The easier it is for us to focus, the easier it is for us to be resolute about what we’re doing and the more successful we’ll be.  But what makes it easier for us to focus?  There’s a short answer for this too.  It’s called “Make it a Habit.”  When something has turned into a habit, we don’t have to consciously think about it.  We just do it because its a part of our day.  Part of our routine.

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How To Energize Your Resolutions

We need to turn every resolution that we set into an easy habit.  We should stress the word EASY here!  Easy means that it requires very little effort for us to accomplish.  For instance, if your resolution is to lose weight, make it a habit to simply walk or jog around the block every night.  Something simple like that.  If your resolution is to  quit smoking, you might choose to pick one moment every day when you would normally reach for a cigarette, after breakfast for example, and choose to skip that cigarette each day.  The key here is for it to be one easy thing that you can make a habit of.

Here’s a list of four Resolution Success Secrets that will forever banish your failure patterns and turn you into a New Year’s Resolution champion!

One Resolution at a Time

This is a big deal.  Your brain has enough work to do every day so choose only one resolution at a time.  Give your brain a rest!  The more resolutions you try and take on, the higher your risk for failure.  Turn yourself into a success machine and you’ll be reinforcing the success of all your future resolutions.

Tiny Steps = Large Successes

The smaller and easier your steps, the more likely you can make a habit of that step.  When you learn to master one tiny step at a time, the process of prioritizing and planning your future resolutions becomes something you KNOW you can do.

Be Accountable. Tell Someone and Write It Down

If you keep your resolution to yourself, you’re less likely to follow through with it.  Studies have shown that telling others what your resolution is, and writing it down, are essential steps that help us all to be more accountable.  If you think about it, businesses make business plans.  They write them down.  Self help gurus have told us to write down our goals for decades.  There is power about writing things down because the physical manifestation of committing your resolution to paper is the very first essential building block to bringing it into the physical world.

Reward Yourself For Doing

When you reward yourself for doing… actually doing… you’re reinforcing the action you’ve expended on behalf of your resolution and encouraging your future success again and again.  Rewarding yourself makes you feel good, and feeling good is a strong motivator.

Go Forth and Conquer!

You’ve now got the essential steps to take at your disposal.  Pretty easy huh?!  Chances are, you can see that these steps are all based on common sense.  Our brains are truly amazing and our capacities are immense, but its been our methods all along that have held us back or caused us to fail.  Now that you have just a bit more knowledge, please exercise it.  Test it.  You’ll see that you have an amazing ability to follow through on your next New Year’s Resolution.

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