First and foremost, it should be noted that forging new and healthier habits is hard. What you are attempting to cultivate in your new year is admirable. If you are not successful on the first go, that is okay! It is not important that you meet your personal goal(s) flawlessly. What is important, is that you meet your goal, despite the setbacks.
There are several ways to mitigate resolution slip-ups. Check out the following tips to help you stay on track and regain control over your personal goals for 2020:
Reconnect with your WHY.
It is often helpful to remember why you set your personal goal in the first place. Perhaps you want to become more active so you can keep up with your children. Maybe you decided to join a book club to rekindle your love of reading. Whatever your why, keep it in mind. Write it down. Revisit it as often as you need to.
Assess for what is off-putting.
Is there a reason why you find yourself shying away from accomplishing your goal(s)? This is a critical piece to consider. Be honest with yourself. Are you putting off eating healthier meals because you feel intimidated or lost when it comes to meal planning? Are you determined to go to the gym once or twice a week but shy away because you feel self-conscious in gym clothes? I encourage you to take a long hard look at the factors that are hindering you. Honestly acknowledging your limitations is the first step in seeking out a solution.
Push through impatience.
It is easy to lose momentum towards achieving our goals because we have unrealistic expectations of the results we are receiving. Progress takes time. Instilling a new way of being takes dedication. You will not see those six-pack abs after two weeks of dieting and exercise. Nor will you be an amazing musician after two months of music lessons. Keep forging ahead. Your efforts will pay off. In moments of impatience, shift your focus to the present. Take note of the benefits you are gaining on a daily basis. For instance, after a gym session, notice how accomplished you feel in that moment!
Routinely revise expectations.
It is not uncommon to have lofty ideals about the goals we have for ourselves. Perhaps you hoped to be closer to achieving your goal in six weeks but three months is the realistic timeline. Plans can change and that is okay. Adjusting expectations can lend to more success down the road. Flexible goals yield a higher rate of success because there is more consideration of unforeseen circumstances and adjustment of abilities.
Get a buddy!
If you do not have one already, consider including a friend or loved one on your journey to your goal. You are more likely to be successful with an accountability partner.
Obstacles will inevitably arise on your journey towards your goal. Consider developing an action plan to implement if/when your veer off course. For instance, if you avoided the gym for the second time this week. No need to get down on yourself up. You could remedy this setback by arranging a gym session with a friend later in the week. Including your friend adds an element of accountability.
Remember to enjoy the journey you are on. It is a big deal to craft and work towards a personal goal for the year. There will be challenges along the way but the more you plan for them, the more successful you will be!
For questions or if you are seeking support in reaching your personal goals, please contact the Amy Wine Counseling Center at (832) 421-8714 and ask for Patricia.