75% failed by the end of January and 95% by the end of the year - that's an unfortunate fate for the vast majority of news year's resolutions. Don't repeat past failures this year - check out these 7 Tips To Achieve Your New Year's Resolution.
1. Just 1 & ONLY 1
Focusing on a single goal will significantly increase your chances of success. It's great to aim big but if you spread your time, energy and focus across too many things you're less likely to succeed. Setting one resolution and seeing it through is better than setting a handful and failing all.
2. Get SMART
To maximise the chances of success your goal must be SMART. SMART goals are specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and time orientated. Goals like "I want to loose weight" or "I want to start to exercise" are not SMART goals. Instead "I want to loose 0.5kg each week for 10 weeks" or "I want to jog 3 times a week for 30mins for 10 weeks" are SMART. See the difference? Click here for more on setting SMART goals.
3. Understand YOUR Motivation
Your new year's resolution needs to be connected to something meaningful in order for it to stick. Ask yourself why you have set your goal and discover what's behind your motivation. For example, goals like "I want to look better" and "I want to fit into a smaller size jeans" need to be connected to something stronger. Discover what it is that makes your resolution important and personal to you.
4. Set Strategies
Strategies are the actions required to achieve your goal. How will you lose the weight, improve your 10km run time, increase your bench press strength or build muscle mass? Whatever the goal, it needs an action plan that includes 1-3 strategies. These are the things you're actually going to do to achieve your goal -it's not going to happen on it's own.
5. Find Support
Tell someone about your new year's resolution. The people around you form your support network. If no one knows about your goal there is no one to encourage you or keep you accountable. Give your support people permission to ask about your goal. You're not expected to do it alone, even the most motivated people including professional sports people have coaches and a support team.
6. Renew Your Motivation
That enthusiasm that you couldn't control on new year's day won't always be there. Constantly finding new ways to renew your motivation is a must. Establishing rewards for success, introducing new challenges, including variety in your training and diet and constantly measuring your progress are just examples of effective motivators that may work for you. It's normal to have motivation that has fluctuating enthusiasm so look to renew it when you recognise it's lacking. Click here for more on how to stay motivated.
7. Prepare For & Expect Set Backs
Small set backs are guaranteed, it's how you respond to them that matters. Don't let small stumbles stop you, accept that they are a necessary part of the journey and keep on going. If you eat something you shouldn't or miss a training session, don't blow your diet completely or skip the rest of your exercise for the week. Small set backs that would otherwise have very little impact on your progress can have a big affect if they're allowed to snowball out of control. Learn from failures and move past them quickly.
David Eggins | Personal Trainer in Brisbane @ Drive Fitness
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