The 3 Important Questions to Ask to Crush your New Year's Resolutions
Was 2017 Your Year?
We are only a few days away until our 2017 calendar has fully served its purpose. Soon, its place on the wall will be exchanged for a fresh one; offering us a black slate and the prospect of starting 2018 anyway we wish. The now empty calendar will soon be filled with birthdays, weddings, graduations, due dates, and milestones. Before we know it, we'll be back in the swing of it and, most likely, back to our old routine.
But, is that what you want? Do you want to repeat last year or do you want to change things up? Are you finally ready to check off that giant goal that has been stewing in the back of your mind or scribbled down in one of your notebooks? Well, then let’s not waste anymore time!
Here are the three questions to ask so you can set yourself up for success and accomplish your New Year's Resolutions. Make 2018 the year you finally reach your goals!
Why this goal? WHY do you want to accomplish X, Y, or Z? Do you want to lose 20 lbs to return to the weight you were in high school? Do you want to learn to cook to save money by not eating out? Do you want to go back to school to further your career? If your answer sounds similar to these, I dare you to dig a little deeper. These reasons are fine but they won’t inspire and motivate you to keep working towards their fulfillment. What you need to find is the WHY waaaay below the surface. You need to uncover the emotional connections to your goal.
Let’s use the weight goal as an example since it’s a very popular one (it was mine for several years). You want to lose 20 lbs and your initial reason is to resemble the fitness models you follow on Instagram. This reason might inspire you to get a gym membership and decide to go three times a week. Fast forward a few weeks later and you've only gone twice. Before you know it, you have completely forgotten about the gym because life got too crazy and it no longer fits into your schedule. Your goal is no longer a priority.
Now, imagine if you spent 5-10 minutes on January 1st to ask yourself WHY you wanted to lose the weight. You would begin visualizing yourself accomplishing your goal and starting to imagine how you would feel. How would losing this weight change your day? How would you act? How would you carry yourself? Would you interact with people differently? How would they treat you? How would you dress? How would you treat yourself 20 lbs lighter?
By answering these questions and picturing yourself having already reached your goal, you will create positive mental images that will ignite your motivation to keep you going. Now, you'll gladly work towards your goal since you have an idea of how amazing it will feel once you loses the weight. As human beings, we are extremely emotionally driven and if we know that something will make us feel good, we are more likely to do it. Emotions and visualizations are the rocket fuel to your desire of accomplishing a goal. Use them!
HOW will you reach goal and what do you need in order to get there? Do you need to get a gym membership so you have a space to exercise? Do you need to learn a new skill, like the basics of cooking to start your own food blog? Or do you need to improve your public speaking to give incredible presentations at work?
Start by creating your game plan by listing the three things you need to start. So, if we use the weight loss example, you might need:
1. A membership to a gym close by that opens early so you can workout before work. If you have young kids you might need a gym that offers childcare so you can workout while your kids are entertained (a quick google search will show the gyms in you area that offer this service).
Some fun and new workout gear in bright colors to motivate you to get them out of the closet (Old Navy, TJ Maxx, and Marshalls have great selections and their prices are very budget friendly).
A workout routine that works for you and keep you engaged (if you want more guidance on what workouts you should try, see if your gym offers a free personal trainer session or find some trainers to follow online. Most have E-books with workout routines or YouTube videos you can watch. I really enjoy Tone It Up and I do their workouts all the time).
This is another key component to your game plan. WHEN are you going to be working on your goal? How much time can you allot each day or week to your goal.
The following might sound counterintuitive but in the beginning, I implore you to start out slowly! Refrain from suddenly starting a new routine because that is the perfect way to feel overwhelmed and eventually decide to quite. I have been down that road so learn from my mistakes...
In the past, I would go from being inactive to working out every single day. This would last for a few days until I started feeling utterly miserable since I was SO fixated on staying on track. I was constantly thinking about food and the foods that I told myself I couldn’t eat. And guess what happened next? I would fall off the wagon and feel horribly guilty that I couldn’t stick to my new routine. My confidence would plummet and I would be right back to where I started. Once I shifted my tactic to start off slowly day-by-day instead of jumping in, I was able to balance my life better, which made it possible to succeed in a more enjoyable manner. I was finally able to lose 25 lbs and improve my relationship with food.
Changing your day-to-day is a tough process and it doesn’t happen overnight. By dipping your toe into your goal instead of cannonballing, you can ease your way into a new routine and avoid feeling completely overwhelmed. Now, the chance of you accomplishing your goal is much higher since you have learned how to make the gym a part of your day-to-day over a period of time rather than going from 0 to 100 mph in just one day.
And that’s it! You have all the tools you need to get working on your goal. Let’s recap the main points:
- There are three components to consider when you have a goal: Why, How, and When
Taking a few minutes before you start to create a game plan will set you up for success. Write them down in a notebook to review during your progress
Find the emotional WHY to your reasoning for selecting a particular goal
List the three things you need in order to know HOW you will start your journey
Figure out WHEN you can work on your goal and slowly change your routine
Know that you have the power to conquer any goal that fires you up. It might not happen right away but if you consistently work at it, you’ll find yourself reaching your goal in an enjoyable manner without sacrificing your quality of life.
It’s time to get to it! Let me know in the comments below what your goals are for 2018! Do you have any other tips to share with my readers? I would love to hear them :)
P.S. What more individualized help to reach your wellness goals and maintain the results for years to come? Schedule a free health consultation with me and we can evaluate where you are right now so you are better equipped to move forward towards accomplishing your goals. And the best part? It’s free!
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