Welcome to the New Year!
Setting New Year Resolutions have become a tradition for most of us, but more appropriately, have become like wishes. Only around 9% of people successfully achieve their resolutions. Why such a small success rate? The answer is simple, but we tend to over complicate it. A resolution for a new year should be treated the same way as any goal that you set in your everyday life or business. When a business establishes a goal to achieve in the next 12-24 months, that goal is then broken down into what I call, “bite size” goals or milestones to keep the business on track. An example:
A company wants to increase sales by $500,000 over the next 12 months. The company will set a weekly goal of $9,615 ($500k/52). The company is likely to also establish how many customers it takes to generate this additional $9,615 a week and implement appropriate marketing to new and existing customers along with any new product offerings or promotions.
Now, to move past the business example and relate that to you as an individual. Resolve to set small, incremental goals (bite size). The goals should be daily, weekly, monthly, and quarterly. Common resolutions revolve around health and self-improvement. Although these are very important goals, most people go about them the wrong way. Here are some common ways people approach this:
“I resolve to lose 40 pounds in 2018!” or
“I resolve to stop eating unhealthy food in 2018!” or
“I resolve to stop eating sugar or no more sodas in 2018!” or
“I resolve to read 10 books on self-improvement in 2018!
Each of these are admirable goals/resolutions, but they are much too big to chew on at one time. If you are setting resolutions such as these for 2018 or even something very different, here’s a way to increase your success rate. My personal example of a goal I set in 2017, it wasn’t a resolution, but a goal I set around November of 2016. My goal was to drink only water. At the time, I loved to drink SWEET tea (very sweet), juice, and a bottle of water a week. I would easily drink 2-3 gallons of sweet tea a week along with half a gallon of juice. Drinking a bottle or glass of water, was once or twice a week at most. I had a lot of work to do.
- Establish the long-term goal
To drink only water. I was clear that I wanted to drink only water or at least 95% of what I drink is water. However, I did not limit myself to accomplishing this by the end of 2017. This was a lifestyle change and old habits had to be broken and new habits developed. I gave myself 24 months.
- Start with bite size goals
Think of food. When you have a steak, burger, fish, or chicken on your plate, you do not try to eat the entire piece at one time, but you take bite size portions that you can chew on and easily digest. Goals are no different. I started with my juice intake. Because juice wasn’t the major source of my sugar intake, I felt more confident that I could eliminate that from my diet. My goal was to decrease my juice intake to one glass per week and increase my water intake to 1 class daily for at least 5 out of 7 days. This was do-able.
- Evaluate your progress
January 2017 was the point I became very intentional. During that month, I went a week without any juice, met my 5 glasses of water, and even drank a little less sweet tea. During February, I had a lapse, and drank a couple of glasses of juice one week, that exceeded my one glass maximum. After the first 3 months of the year, I able to notice a considerable change in my juice, water, and tea intake. I had reduced juice to once every other week, tea was now down to 3 glasses per week (instead of 3 per day), and water was at 2 bottles per day.
- Celebrate the small victories
All though I was not yet consuming 95% water, my progress was amazing to me! And that is key, measure your success by you alone, not by what others are doing. I never thought I could say no to a glass of my wife’s SWEET tea, but I was now doing it and opting for water. I was headed in the right direction and very excited! I even noticed I was losing weight, which wasn’t part of the plan, but was welcomed.
- Stay consistent
Throughout 2017, there were times I wanted sweet tea and even indulged in a half of glass of tea here and there, but nothing compared to what I did before. The last 6 months of 2017 I consumed no sodas, all of 5 glasses of SWEET tea, 3 glasses of juice, and about 97% water. As 2018 begins, my goal is to stay consistent and maybe drink an occasional hot chocolate in the winter or hot chai tea (not SWEET), no juice, and 99% water.
You can achieve your 2018 resolutions if you view them as goals with bite size milestones. To lose those 40 pounds, start with 5 pounds per month (1 pound per week), set a cutoff time for eating late (8:00pm), exercise 3 days out of the week (if you currently do less than that). Understand that there are different factors that impact your goals. Don’t be discouraged to set a goal to take longer than a year, that’s fine, just be sure you are making progress towards the goal and not giving yourself excuses to procrastinate or delay your efforts.
2018 is the year that you will accomplish what you are intentional about!
#Happy New Year! #Resolutions #Welcometo2018