Only 8% of people who make New Year’s Resolutions actually keep to them according to a study discussed in the Huffington Post. Similar studies show that resolutions made mid-year do not work that well either.
See, what happens is a lot of people get together and start to discuss what they want to do in the next year and they start with great intentions, but as the group dissipates so does the resolution. Earlier this year I was reading Jon Acuff’s book Finish. In the book (which is great) he puts all the emphasis on getting across the finish line. Whether you are cutting your goal in half or extending the deadline, it’s important that you finish and don’t lose heart.
I think the biggest issue here is that a lot of people put so much pressure on their resolution, and it is entirely unnecessary. We have this idea that we must finish a goal or a resolution perfect without any error, and that’s complete garbage.
If you are trying to lose weight and you slip up and drink a Mountain Dew, is it in your best interest to (1) quit your goal or (2) give yourself some grace and keep going? Most people, from what studies have shown, choose Option #1.
So, what do we do?
Resolutions aren’t meant to be done alone. The truth is, we need other people to support us in everything we do, especially when we are making a lifestyle change. One of my resolutions that I have started last week is to be more consistent with the podcast and Web site. I have let the excuse of busyness prevent me from doing what I need to do with the business, blog, and podcast.
I am busy, but I cannot use that as an excuse to not follow through on promises and commitments that I have made, even if some of them are to myself.
I would like you to enter 2018 with the mindset that you will fail, but you will recover and keep moving. Anyone who thinks they are going to lose 50 pounds, losing two pounds per week for 25 weeks and they will be done are sadly mistaken. There will be roadblocks, temptations, and setbacks—but that’s okay. What matters is that you finish, even if it isn’t pretty.
It would be cool to see a 100% increase in the number of successes that happen with resolutions, sadly though, that would only bring us to 16% success—but it would be progress nonetheless.
To wrap up, I want to give you a few tips for goal setting that I think will help you:
1. Set a tangible goal (something you can measure)
2. Don’t be too aggressive with the finish date (whatever you think it will be, multiply it by two)
3. Pick someone to keep you accountable
4. Expect failure, but recover
5. Have a little bit of fun
I am going to post a follow up on how I am doing with my resolution as well as how I used those five tips to frame my own resolutions. I wish you all the best for 2018, I know it’s going to be a great year.
Godspeed, and may God bless you all in the new year!