Make those New Year Resolutions reality!
Happy New Year! It’s officially 2023 and time to get goal setting with New Year’s Resolutions. Get out your journals, throw away the junk, and make sure those gym memberships are active – be ready to make this year your best one yet!
There is a magic to January 1st. A new year, fresh start and reset to old habits. We’re through the Christmas period of over-indulging, holidaying, and treating ourselves to anything and everything. New years resolutions almost seem like that fix-all solution to refreshing and setting ourselves up to live our best life in the new year.
How did it all begin?
A common practice across many cultures, the humble resolutions to celebrate the New Year date back to the time of the Ancient Babylonians nearly 4,000 years ago. It was then that they first began to set ‘new year pledges’ and celebrate in honour of the New Year. The Babylonians believed that fulfilling these promises would mean their Gods would look favourably upon them for the future. Similarly, through the Ancient Roman times, Middle Ages and up until the beginning of modern use of the Gregorian calendar in 1582, varying cultures and religions celebrated and honoured the New Year with various festivities and prayers for rich harvests and health. Nowadays our resolutions are much more secular-based, capturing people’s hopes and dreams through imaginative goals to better their lives.
Wondering what are some of our most common resolutions for 2023? Studies report people want to exercise more, eat healthier, save more money, lose weight, and spend more time with loved ones. With women and Gen Z the top demographics to be setting these goals, it can be exciting to anticipate the greatness of making these positive changes and being rewarded for your hard work. But the odds are stacked against our resolution makers! January is filled with newly renewed gym memberships, an influx of journals being started, heightened self-help book purchases, and plenty of new equipment to entertain your latest hobby. But time goes on, motivation fades, and we move our new bits and pieces further back into the cupboard collecting dust. More than half of all resolutions will fail to be completed in the New Year with habits returning to as they previously were.
So how can you break the cycle? Make your goals reality? Have 2023 be your best year yet?
It’s all about staying motivated, being accountable, and making sure your goals are realistic. Avoid disappointment or dissatisfaction with your effort by being kind to yourself and understanding that often our goals are part of a marathon, not a race, to accomplish.
Here are three ways you can make realistic resolutions and keep them in the New Year!
1. Go big, or go home? (OR, just keep it simple!)
It can be overwhelming to tackle goals that are too big or too far out of your comfort zone. While a challenge is always healthy – know the difference between setting yourself up for success or setting yourself up to fail. Having a goal to buy a new car is something practical and achievable with the right saving habits and research. But if that dream car is a shiny red Ferrari – you might want to make sure the goal can actually be achieved before reality disappoints.
The lesson is simple – set resolutions that are specific, measurable, attainable, realistic, and time sensitive. These SMART Goals are the key to making (and NOT breaking!), your resolutions. If in doubt, start small. As you progress adjust your goals accordingly and you’ll find that big goals are better worked on in small doses!
2. Stay consistent
Consistency is key! Motivation will come and go – but understand that you can’t be perfect all the time. Skip the gym session if it means you’ll be back and refreshed the day after. Don’t skip the gym session if you brought your membership in January 2021… and still haven’t gone. Being consistent means you get to slowly chip away at your goals at a more manageable rate rather than being quickly burnt out. Slow and steady!
Again this is a great opportunity to break your end goal into smaller stages to work through. You get to celebrate the small wins and tackle a bigger picture outcome at a consistent pace throughout the year.
3. Actively track your progress
Track your progress to stay in tuned with where you’re at! Particularly for those big goals, keeping a tracker (whether digital or physical) allows you to see where you’re at, where you were, and where you want to be. It’s a great way to reflect on your progress and document the stages of your journey. Remembering the ups and downs of achieving your goals is a great reflection of your personal development and gives a blueprint for others that might be admiring you along your journey!
Make the tracker specific to you and kept in a way that entices you to use it. It might be an excel spreadsheet, the notes app on your phone, a physical notebook, or bullet journal – the more specific to you, the more likely you’ll use it!
So now it’s all up to you! Make your dreams reality and accomplish your goals in 2023. Do you have one or many to work through? Simple or challenging? Remember the end outcome will be well worth the hard work to get there! Best of luck and happy goal setting for 2023.
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