Hard to believe, but we’re almost one twelfth of the way through 2015! How are those new year’s resolutions coming?
Research from 2014 shows that 64% of people report still being on track for their resolution after one month, which seems pretty admirable. However, only 8% of people ultimately end up achieving their goal. So I wanted to share a couple of ideas that might help us all make it into the 8% group.
- Make It A Habit
While it’s commonly believed that it takes 21 days to form a new habit, a 2010 UK study found that it’s actually a little more than three times that — 66 days! This means we have to keep being patient with ourselves. Take it one day at a time, one week at a time, one month at a time. If you’ve made it for 30 days, you’re awesome! Just know that it might take a little longer to truly internalize your new efforts. For me, that means 5:30am is still going to feel early for quite a while…
- Make It Personal
Giving a goal a personal connection to my life always helps me take it more seriously. Don’t just say that you want to quit smoking – say that you want to quit smoking so you can chase your grandkids around the backyard this summer. Every time you look at a cigarette, it’ll help you remember a deeper meaning for committing to it. For me, it’s writing two blogs posts per week to be able to generate content that I hope to one day share as a public speaker. While 5:30am is rough, I’m letting my future-self down if I don’t get out of bed.
- Make It Communal
Surround yourself with people that will support you and hold you accountable. Let them inspire you to keep up the good work. Last week, I took a seven day challenge to write a post every day. It wasn’t necessarily easy, but it built confidence and connected me to people that I know want to product content on a regular basis, as well. Have people on your side cheering for you!
- Make It Charitable
This one might only apply to athletic events, but it’s awesome. Whether you’re training for your first 5k or an Ironman, you can raise money for a cause that matters to you using sites like Crowd Rise. Not that he isn’t motivated anyway, but a college friend of mine initially wanted to raise $10,000 for IU Dance Marathon while training for a full Ironman in memory of his sister. After about a week, he was more than 25% to his goal…so he increased it to $50,000! Not surprisingly, he exceeded that. Not only did he finish his race, he got to leave a legacy in his wake that will last well beyond him while honoring a loved one. If that isn’t motivation to keep going, I don’t what is.
Creating new habits and accomplishing goals can be tough, but they don’t have to be impossible. If new year’s resolutions have been a struggle up to now, hit the reset button and give them another go. If you’ve started feeling pulled to start something, we still have 92% of the year remaining! You can do it.