Have you ever wondered why do we set goals on a New Year’s Eve? It’s quite a strange time to suddenly decide to change your life, wouldn’t you agree? Well, there is a reason for it.
In fact, we tend to be so predictable that our New Year’s Resolutions are often the same. The top five common challenges people set for themselves are:
- Losing weight
- Making better financial decisions
- Quit smoking
- Introducing more exciting things
Does any of these possibilities sound familiar to you? You have probably set one or more of these as the countdown is taking place and everyone is celebrating. But when the fireworks are nothing more than a memory, and the hangover passes, what do we do? After a while, we forget all about it, the rush simply fades away.
So why it is that people fail at their New Year’s Resolutions?
You would think that we would have gotten better at achieving them by now! But no, we are still struggling to fulfill our goals. No matter how many times we have tried this routine before.
As a life-coach, I have heard a lot of experiences and stories about failure. So I’ve gathered the main six reasons why we fail.
1. No social support
Unless you are an introvert person who can manage well on your own, it always helps to have someone who encourages and motivates you. There’s nothing better than an early morning phone call from a person dear to you to remind you that you need to get up and take your butt to the gym. If you manage to persuade them to come with you; well, that´s even better.
Sometimes it’s hard to admit to the people you love that you have a problem or that you need to change your life. It’s natural. But only when we take off our everyday masks; you know, that “I’m-always-happy” masks, we allow our loved ones to see us truly.
When that happens, reach out. Ask for their help.
Your family and friends will be your strongest allies. You can persuade yourself into believing that you could do it better by yourself. And maybe you could. But we are social creatures and always need empathy from others. Remember this.
2. Find your why
I’ve talked about this before.
When you know exactly WHY you are doing what you are doing, you don’t need so many reminders to keep on doing it.
We set goals when we reach a breaking point. You go shopping, and while you are in the fitting room, you realize you are overweight. Suddenly, you make a decision to change this aspect of your life.
You say it out loud: “From tomorrow, I will eat healthier and do more exercise.” Sure, that motivation will stick for a couple of days, but then what? Sometimes it’s hard to change your life so drastically in just one or two days.
Personally, I struggled with this since I didn’t spend enough time finding my true WHY. It’s just not about being overweight, as you would think. The real reason is always buried much deeper. We have to dive deep within to scratch the surface of our subconscious mind to find the answer to our >>WHY<< question.
[easy-tweet tweet=”You must grab a shovel and dig into yourself to find your strongest motivations.”]
There are times when it’s good to think logically, and sometimes it’s better to include emotions.
Ask yourself: what’s the one thing that triggers your strongest emotions? That’s your why. This answer will keep you motivated no matter what. Think of it as a bright lighthouse leading you home on the scariest stormy night.
Someone once said that the two things that motivate us the most are:
- running away from pain and
- finding enjoyment in our lives — the negative, and the positive side.
Which one works for you? Well, it depends to which side you feel more connected to. If you want to quit smoking, you can look at it from two different perspectives. Either you will die from lung cancer one day, or you will get a healthier body.
3. Don’t set the bar too high
[easy-tweet tweet=”Instead of making a revolution, go for evolution.”]
If the change is too revolutionary for you, make no mistake, it will be very hard to follow it.
Also, trying to realize too many goals at once may be impossible to achieve. You want to stop smoking, eat healthier and do more exercise, all at the same time! This is why New Year’s Resolutions don’t work, guys!
Don’t go for the big things in your first attempt. It’s much more effective if you try to add small changes into your everyday life and then do it incrementally.
This is where the 30-Day Challenge comes in. Believe me, it’s awesome.
You challenge yourself to change. The best thing about this is that you’re the one who sets your own goals and you evaluate yourself: the only person you cannot lie to.
For starters try adding a green smoothie to your diet for 30 days in the row. Afterward, start making some additional changes to one of your meals for the next 30 days. And so on until you reach a healthier nutrition and lifestyle, almost without even realizing how you got there.
When doing his own 30-Days Challenges, Matt Cutts (creator of the 30 Day Challenge) wrote a novel, started biking and climbed the Mount Kilimanjaro, the highest mountain in Africa.
And now we have reached the point when you have to ask yourself what would YOU like to do?
Ready to transform your life with the 30-Day Challenge?
4. Believe in yourself
It sounds obvious but trust me, people don’t always know what this means until they actually get the taste of it.
We are afraid of failure. Especially when you’ve tried 20 times to change your life, so it’s hard to believe that the 21st will work.
But you just can’t quit, can you? What else is there? Going back to a place where you are miserable is just not an option.
Here’s an alternative. You can brainwash yourself into positive thinking.
5. Enjoy the ride
It’s not about the destination, but more about the journey. If you keep thinking about the perfect body, you will one day have, you won’t be enjoying the green smoothie you are drinking right now. And then soon enough, you’ll just start hating that damn green smoothie.
An important thing when you set a goal is not to think about the finish line because you’ll never get there if the goal is so far. If you enjoy each day, it’s how you actually change your life, not looking to the future.
[easy-tweet tweet=”Don’t get lost in thinking about reaching the goal, but try to enjoy it as much as possible.”]
Let’s say I want to go from Ljubljana to Paris by car. So I have two options. One, I take the long way through mountains and little towns. I get to visit the French countryside and taste the wine. When I get tired, I stop and have a rest at a nice villa and enjoy the scenery. Or, option number two is taking the highway straight to Paris without stopping. No towns, no wine, no scenery. Do you get the picture?
6. Measure it
We like numbers. We like golden medals. Be sure to give yourself a pat on the back each time you realize how far you’ve come.
Set specific short-term goals. What´s the point to obsess about it, (don’t go check the scale three times a day!) just try to incorporate those little reminders into your everyday routine.
Review weekly how well you are doing. When you see your evolution in such a concrete form, you’ll feel more motivated to keep going.
If your goal is “eating healthier” … do you know what does “eat healthier” even mean?
It’s much better to start doing something —anything— today. Simply say, “I will make a green smoothie every day and incorporate that into my everyday life for 30 days. Then, we’ll see.”
Been there, done that!
Oh, yes I have! I used to be the Master of Procrastination. I’ve done it all. How do you think I came up with these 6 things? It’s because I’ve made all those 6 mistakes before.
This is why I’m here now, you know? I’ve found that it helps to have someone guiding you. It keeps you focused and on track.
When I tried to change my life in a few days, I failed. When I didn’t set the right “why” I failed.
I failed at my New Year’s Resolutions more times that you’d know!
And yes, of course, it was frustrating! At some point, I felt like a hamster running in its wheel, not going anywhere and with no chance of getting out of it.
One day, I found this 30-Day challenge, and it went pretty well.
It turns out that 30 days is actually an ideal period to acquire new desirable habits and/or getting rid of old ones you don’t need (such as smoking, for example). Don’t look at it as something you do for 30 days and then get the reward. On the contrary, each day is a reward itself.
Many psychologists say that it takes 21 days to incorporate a new habit into your life and fully embrace it. So I’ve done this many times. I’ve set 30-Days Challenges for everything you can think of. And they have all worked.
30-Day Challenge provides the ground on which you’ll work for 30 days in order to achieve a specific goal. Having a tangible purpose for each of your days actually, makes them count. Besides, the whole point of this is your personal happiness, so I don’t think there’s a better reason than that!
So even though I failed at everything so many times, I never gave up on myself. It’s all about doing it the right way.
Go for it!
If you approach the 30-Day Challenge correctly, it can become a wonderful thing in your life. And that is exactly what I’m aiming for.
I’m organizing a Guided 30-Day Challenge with Live Support on Facebook, and you can become part of this great experience!
It will be a place full of information on how to approach the challenge, experiences, and people from all over the world and of course, I will be there every step of the way with and for you.
We will be sharing our development and ideas and at the same time members will be able to private message me for more advice.
It’s a great thing to do if you want to learn how to keep doing this challenge the right way instead of failing on your own.