The Complete Guide to New Year’s Resolutions

Another New Year is approaching and with it comes the opportunity for a fresh start.  Everyone everywhere has something they want to do or change, about themselves or their world.  However, for many, the ritual of making a New Year’s resolution is an exercise in wishful thinking, not transformative action.  Sure it would be nice to have a new job, take your dream vacation or lose those love handles, but what are you actually going to do about it? – I mean, in addition to posting and tweeting about your intentions. 

Truth is most resolutions don’t last.  And it’s no wonder why; significantly altering your lifestyle or changing your habits is no easy task.  If you want to realize your resolutions you must be prepared to plan, prioritize and persevere.  Fortunately, I have worked up a guide to help you do just that. 

new year new year new years resolution

A New Year and a New You

Make some time, switch all of your devices off and distance yourself from the usual distractions for a few minutes.  If you are ever going to get this resolution thing right, you’ve got to be willing to answer the tough questions honestly.  How, realistically, will you get from where you are to where you want to be? 

If you have not identified your goals and created a plan for achieving them, you will always be scrambling.  It’s not possible to make progress when you are putting out fires.  And, if you don’t know what you’re working towards it’s like you are in the passenger’s seat and no one is driving.  No wonder you’ve never realized a resolution, you’ve never put in the work to achieve them and no one can do it for you – they are too busy making things happen for themselves.

So the time has come to make change a priority.  You can do that by doing this; answer each of these questions in detail, without sugarcoating your failures in the past and the challenges in the future. 

What do you want and why?

Why have you failed in the past?

How bad to you want it?

What are the roadblocks?

The Recipe for Resolution

Having created some clarity with respect to where you’ve been and where you are headed, it’s time to get going.  Change is a by-product of constant and persistent action.  So, once you set out down the road to resolution know that when you rest, Resistance – in the form of everything that wants to drag you down – thrives.  But, when you persevere and sacrifice in pursuit of change, the forces of the universe seem to conspire in your favor. 

Everyone who has ever set out to do something worthwhile has felt the urge to procrastinate; we’re all crippled by the fear of the unknown.  So, you’re not alone when you feel doubt and pessimism; and that’s okay.  On the other hand, quitting is unacceptable.  If you back down Resistance will have claimed another victim and shattered another dream.

So what’s the take-away?  The status-quo is comfortable, change is tremendously painful.  Expect to encounter struggle, stress and sacrifice, but know that they are part of the process.  Prepare for your journey and use these simple strategies to persist in the face of Resistance.