So it’s that time of the year again
The start of the new year.
New year, new goals right?
Let’s take some time to think of 2018’s resolutions though.
And ask yourself an honest question.
How many of your new year’s resolutions in 2018 were you able to achieve?
It’s not surprising if there were little to none.
And I’m not being pessimistic or negative.
That’s because 80% of new year’s resolutions tend to fail.
And there are two huge reasons why.
Setting unrealistic goals.
And having an action plan that’s not sustainable.
We set goals that are probably way too big and unrealistic to achieve within the span of a year.
Either that or we set goals that require either too much time or effort that it’s impossible to keep up with in the long-term.
There are no other bigger reasons than these two.
And it’s about time we learnt how to set smarter new year’s resolutions that actually stick.
First, set smaller and realistic goals, even if they seem very easy to achieve.
It’s better to achieve a smaller goal than to give up on a big goal.
At least you would have accomplished something and that contributes to a good motivation boost.
Second, come up with a sustainable action plan to reach your goal.
And with emphasis on the word sustainable.
If it requires too much time and effort, it’s going to be too much to keep up and you’re very likely to quit.
Let’s take weight loss as an example.
Let’s say I weigh 200 lbs and I want to work on losing weight to be in better shape for 2019.
My new year resolution would be to lose just 15 lbs.
It’s a realistic target because 15 lbs isn’t a huge number that’s impossible to achieve.
Especially if I have a high body fat % to start with since it’s easier to lose fat when my body fat % is higher.
Now that I’ve set my realistic goal, I’ll have to think of a sustainable action plan to lose 15 lbs.
And the most important part of my action plan is that I want it to be easy to follow.
So easy to follow that I don’t feel overburdened by it and feel like quitting a month later.
I know that if I want to lose weight, the two major influencing factors will be diet and exercise.
So for my diet, I want to make it easy.
I don’t want to change my entire diet because that would be too big of a change.
So what I’ll do is I’ll eat the same way but cut out sugary drinks from my diet as an easy start and drink a lot of water.
Sugary drinks are loaded with calories so starting off with that is a simpler move than changing my entire diet.
For exercise, I don’t want to come up with a workout routine that’s too tough or too long because I’ll quit sooner or later.
I’d rather have a workout routine that’s easy and sustainable in the long run.
So I’ll just work out every day for just 5 minutes, focusing on high-intensity cardio (or HIIT).
HIIT workouts are short, sufficiently intense and they don’t require me to go to the gym because I don’t need to use any equipment.
You see, I’m more likely to stick to this action plan because it’s too easy to follow.
The goal is to lose 15 lbs.
The action plan is to just cut out sugary drinks and work out intensely for 5 minutes every day.
But what’s most important from this is building the foundational habits first, then look forward to the results later.
Be it building the habit of exercise.
The habit of healthy living.
The habit of anything that you want to achieve.
Habits come first, not results.
Because without habits, we wouldn’t get anywhere.