It’s the time of year where everyone is pressured to put unrealistic expectations on themselves and give up 15 days in. HOORAY! We’re not being overdramatic, we swear. Out of everyone who makes a New Year’s resolution, 80 percent fail by February. That’s less than two months into the year. Bummer. Compare that to the eight percent of people who stick to and complete their goals by the end of the year.
As many already know, health is the leading resolution, whether the resolution is dieting, working out or focusing on self care. Health and wellness is followed up by being better organized, saving money, getting more sleep, reading more, making more friends and learning a new skill or hobby. All positive life improvements – so why such a large fail rate?
It’s common for us to dream big, which is one way to set yourself up for failure. Think of unrealistic goals like losing a lot of weight in a small amount of time or saying you will work out every day. The size of these goals makes it that more overwhelming when you slip up or start putting everything in practice. Instead of taking things slow, we go all out starting Jan. 1 (or Jan. 2, if you need recovery from the night before) and over time, the momentum slows down. There is only so much one person can do and we often put too much pressure on ourselves.
To help give you success all year long, here are ways to better make your resolutions stick. (Pun intended.)
It takes at least two months to make a habit
We’ve heard the common saying that it takes 21 days to make a habit. Unfortunately, it takes more time than a quarter of a month. According to a study out of the United Kingdom, 66 days is more accurate. Considering 80 percent of people give up on their resolution by February, there is little opportunity for a habit to form in that time frame. Drill the number 66 into your brain. Frustrated about progress? Keep chugging ahead – it will get easier as more time goes by. Before you dive into your resolution, get in the mindset that you’re going to have to put in the work. It’s going to be tough, but once you hit that sweet spot, everything will come naturally.
Keep your goals simple
If you come out of the gate with big goals, you’re more likely to fail. Sorry, that was harsh. Let’s rephrase it. Think of little goals as a staircase. Each goal gets you one step closer to the top. By seeing yourself complete these steps, it’s a better motivator to keep your eye on the prize – or just create healthy habits within your lifestyle. Look at each month in the year and reasonably plan what you think you will be able to accomplish. If you set up goals that are too easy, you can always adjust them. Likewise, if your goals are too difficult, you are not a failure for bringing them down to meet your needs. We’re here to tell you that goals can be fluid – you don’t have to set them in stone. Having fluid goals can even help you find a balance for what works best for you and your lifestyle.
Be specific with your goals
Making it a goal to “lose weight” is one way to cause resolution failure fast. How much weight? What’s the timeline? How are you going to do it? See where we’re going with this. Making arbitrary goals means there is no straight line to results. Each goal has to be set with intention and planning. OK, so you want to read more. How much more? How much are you reading now and how would you like to see that number increase? The more specific and intentional each goal is, the more likely you are to successfully reach it.
Plan each week to best assist your goals
There has never been a downfall to planning. Get in the habit of looking to the week ahead, which will better help with planning meals and scheduling time to work out or any other health-related activities. Use a calendar or planner to carve out time to devote to positive changes, whether it’s an hour of reading every night, unplugging more or making plans with loved ones. Writing out these plans and making sure they are on your radar every day of the week will make it more likely to stick to those plans and get you one step closer to your goals.
Keep track of progress
This part is HUGE. If you don’t keep track of progress, you won’t be able to see how far you’ve come. Think about how good it feels to look back and see all the steps you took to make something happen. By tracking progress, you can go back six months or a year and see that all the little steps and goals added up to something big. When you see how much you’ve accomplished, it’s a great motivator to continue and keep hitting those small goals. Plus, it’s always a good feeling to be proud of your hard work!
No matter what your goals are for 2019, we want you to be successful and happy. It’s easy to get frustrated and give up, which is why we are sitting here cheering for you. And if you want to get on some healthy changes early, we know of a good natural deodorant to incorporate into your 2019.