New Year's Eve has always been a time for looking back to the past, and more importantly, forward to the coming year. It's a time to reflect on the changes we want (or need) to make and resolve to follow through on those changes.
Below is a listing of the most popular resolutions, did your New Year resolutions make the list?
Get a Better Job
Get a Better Education (Learn Something New)
Drink Less Alcohol
Reduce Stress Overall (Enjoy Life More)
Reduce Stress at Work
Take a Trip
Volunteer to Help Others
Spend more Time with Family & Friends
Recent research shows that while 52% of participants in a Resolution study were confident of success with their goals, only 12% actually achieved their goals. Men achieved their goal 22% more often when they engaged in goal setting, a system where small measurable goals are used (lose a pound a week, instead of saying "lose weight"), while women succeeded 10% more when they made their goals public and got support from their friends.
There is a right way and a wrong way to make a New Year's resolution. Here are a few tips to see that your resolution actually makes a difference:
1. Create a Plan
Setting a goal without formulating a plan is merely wishful thinking. In order for your resolution to have resolve, (as the word "resolution" implies), it must translate into clear steps that can be put into action. A good plan will tell you A) What to do next and B) What are all of the steps required to complete the goal.
2. Create Your Plan IMMEDIATELY
If you're like most people, then you'll have a limited window of opportunity during the first few days of January to harness your motivation. After that, most people forget their resolutions completely.It is imperative that you begin creating your plan immediately.
3. Write Down Your Resolution and Plan
http://www.mygoals.com/ exists to help you formulate a plan, which we then help you stick to. But even if you don't use myGoals.com, commit your resolution and plan to writing someplace, such as a notebook or journal.
4. Think "Year Round," Not Just New Year's
Nothing big gets accomplished in one day. Resolutions are set in one day, but accomplished with a hundred tiny steps that happen throughout the year. New Year's resolutions should be nothing more than a starting point. You must develop a ritual or habit for revisiting your plan. myGoals.com helps you stick to your plan by providing email reminders that arrive when it's time to work on a given task.
5. Remain Flexible
Expect that your plan can and will change. Life has a funny way of throwing unexpected things at us, and flexibility is required to complete anything but the simplest goal. Sometimes the goal itself will even change. Most of all, recognize partial successes at every step along the way. Just as a resolution isn't accomplished the day it's stated, neither is it accomplished the day you reach your goal. Rather, it's accomplished in many small increments along the way. Acknowledge these incremental successes as they come.
Hope you can make some reasonable and achievable resolutions and stick to them in the new year. Tomorrow: The History of Resolutions and New Years :o)