Going into the year 2021 after the year we had in 2020, can be very challenging. It can be especially difficult setting goals for the upcoming year, the last year we had taught us the world can change dramatically without any kind of warning. Are you going into the new year with new big goals or resolutions? Well I might be able to help you stay on track and accomplish the goals you have set for yourself with this article.
History of Resolutions
It all started 4,000 years ago when the Babylonians went into their new year with an 11-day festival in the month of March, but in 1582, Pope Gregory made January 1st more popular, and that persists to this day. The first of New Year's resolutions came from the Babylonians, which were pledges to their gods, hoping to earn goods and or get out of debt.
Why Set Resolutions and Goals?
A resolution is a firm decision to do or not to do something. There are different types of resolutions such as promising to change a bad habit, such as being on your phone less or quitting smoking. One bad habit I'm changing this year is to drink less sugary drinks. Another resolution type is to develop a positive habit, such as volunteering more or recycling more. One positive habit that I'm trying to create for myself is to be more eco friendly. The reason to set such resolutions and goals is to better yourself in different ways and challenge your brain and body for a healthier way of life.
Are Your Resolutions Realistic and Achievable?
What are the goals and/or resolutions have you set for yourself? Are they realistic and achievable? Research shows that 50 percent of adults in the United States make New Year’s resolutions and set goals, but fewer than 10 percent stay true to those goals for only a couple of months and Covid-19 could make that number plummet. I’ve been susceptible to this in the past years myself. You want to make sure that the goals you set are not set up to fail. Yes, you should reach as high as you can, but it needs to be practical because it can get challenging a couple months into the new year. Especially after the year we had fighting with Covid-19, I suggest to make it fun and not very challenging.
For example, one of the goals for this year that I set for myself is to use less plastic. How will I accomplish this goal? I already started using a refillable water bottle and I refill it once it’s empty. Also another way that I will try to carry out this goal is to avoid individual wrapped items and buy organic, bulk options, or items that offer a more environmentally friendly packaging. I feel that this goal that I set for myself will be practical for my lifestyle and wellbeing. It’s an achievable goal that is very realistic.
Picking Your Goal
Here are a few other examples of goals that would be realistic and achievable that might help make your decision with what goals you set for yourself:
Aim for at least 30 minutes of moderate physical activity every work day.
Eating healthy, drinking more water, cutting out sugary and fattening foods like soda or candy
Start cooking at home and eating out less
Start a new hobby that suits your personality
Staying On Track
We all have some kind of goal or resolution we set each year but why not make this new year special and really dig in deep and try to get the outcome you have been wanting. Say you set a goal for yourself to exercise for 30 plus minutes each work day. You’re two months into the new year. It’s Friday, and you had a long week of work. Why not take a break and skip your exercise for the day? Well I’ll tell you why that's a bad idea. Once you take that first day off it will be easier to take that next day off. That once passionate burning flame in your chest to achieve your goal, is slowly shriveling. Eventually, it will get to a certain point where it will just be some coals and you’ll find yourself back where you started. I’ve personally been susceptible to this and it isn’t a great feeling. Here are some ways to stay on tack with your resolutions and goals:
Have set expectations
Measure your progress
Try changing your environment to make it easier for you
Be kind to yourself, try to keep yourself from diminishing your drive to success
Consistency is Key When Setting Goals and Resolutions
Think about it; If you are consistent, you will be rewarded with glory by sticking with it plus whatever outcome you have set for yourself with your goal. Going back to one of the examples, if you miss that day, you would just have an extra 30 minutes added to your resting time. Is it worth it? Only you can decide but take this into consideration, if you had a long week, is adding 30 minutes really that bad? You will feel better about yourself more and more with each day you get through. Those 30 little minutes of exercise would make you feel better and energized. Once you're ready for sleep, you'll sleep like a baby too. Being consistent in my life has helped overcome hard tasks, it showed me that if I work hard with enough persistence I will achieve my goal. Being consistent, not only helps you accomplish your goals but also teaches you to be more consistent in other areas of your life like your work or with your family.
In conclusion, try to put time into your planning with your resolutions and goals. Make up some kind of detailed strategy to accomplish those goals and start with small steps. Be consistent but do different things to spice up your routine and so you don't get bored. Make it a fun challenge like a game. You work out a full week and then reward yourself at the end of the week with some kind of treat, whether it be a sweet or something cool you have been saving up for, like the powerful computer I’ve been drooling over, it would be a perfect reward for all the hard work throughout the year.
Remember making a change in your life on any level is a process and you should take it slow and steady. Get support from your loved ones, they will love to help you prosper in your life. Learn and adapt with the new challenges you have set for yourself. You will encounter some setbacks but don’t let that discourage you from accomplishing your goals!