Why Does My New Year Resolution Fail?

Why do I so often fail with my new year resolution? Are Goals and Resolutions the same thing?

Setting New Years resolutions are a bit of a tradition. I’ve been waking up on the 1st January for as long as I can remember and setting resolutions. Its something my mum first encouraged me to do.

How many resolutions last the year? Not many and that’s probably the case for most people. In fact if you start to research the topic you’ll find that stats suggest that most will be broken by the middle Monday in January. Frequently dubbed Blue Monday, this day is the accumulation of long nights, back to work syndrome, arrival of credit card bills and little to look forward to. Add to that, the fact that most people’s resolutions are about giving something up or doing something we don’t want to, then it can become a difficult proposition to maintain.

Properly formulated goals can be a very different proposition. So why are goals so different?

So ask yourself the question – Do you want to lose weight or is it that you want to feel better about yourself? Do you want to give up alcohol or do you want to live a healthier lifestyle?

Once you understand what’s driving your resolution then working toward achieving that goal is about having  positive motivation, rather than moving away from something you don’t want.

Goals should be specific. They should identify exactly what it is you want to achieve, this way you will know when you’re achieved it. This should include a quantity if appropriate and a time by when you will have completed it.

So if your goal is about getting fit, how will you know when you feel fitter? Perhaps a measure might be being able to run for 5 minutes without stopping by the end of March OR being able to walk upstairs without being out of breath.

Goals are much easier to achieve in small steps. If your goal is to write a novel by the end of the year, that’s one big task that you may put off until November and then it becomes unrealistic. Break your goals into small manageable steps, which in this case might be to write the outline by the end of January, 1st chapter by end of February and get feedback in March. Celebrate each achievement as you reach it.
And remember, don’t be hard on yourself. We all lose our way from time to time. It’s like riding a bike, the trick is to get back on when you fall off. So don’t be hard on yourself, just resolve to start again.

What’s Your NY Resolution?

If you need help with your goals this year, then having some support can really make the difference.  Give me a call now on 07714 216388 to see how I can help you make a splash with your goals.

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Healthy Body, Healthy Mind

Does a healthy body really result in a healthy mind?

I’m not a scientist, I can’t say for sure, but its an ethos that I live by.  It started a couple of careers ago when I worked in a busy customer service environment and much that I hated going to the gym – I always found that a good session on the cross trainer helped to get rid of some of the stress and negative emotions that I was feeling. 

More recently, I found myself in a job that I was bored and demotivated in.  A good walk in the fresh air, even in the rain at lunchtime always made me feel better.  Although the problem didn’t really go away until I left the job, the lunchtime fresh air sessions were part of the catalyst for retraining.

Google the topic and you will find evidence to support this.  Recent studies by the  American Psychological Association (APA), have demonstrated that our mental, emotional, and physical health are closely linked.

Although technically not a value the principle of Healthy Body, Healthy Mind is firmly embedded in my business, particularly amongst my weight management clients, where we frequently have “walk and talk” sessions.

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I believe its important to nip negative feelings in the bud as longer lasting periods of stress can increase the risk of heart-related problems e.g. high blood pressure, heart attack or stroke.

Depression can also be linked to a higher risk of developing high blood pressure,  heart attack.  But equally important is that a lack of excerise can also be the cause for stress and depression kicking in so its important that we manage and are aware of both.

So getting a balance is important, I’m not suggesting that anyone suddenly starts training for a marathon, but my one tip to anyone would be:

If you’re feeling the stresses and strains of your day, stop, take 5 and go for a short stroll.  You really will feel better for it.

 

Got The January Blues?………

Do you get the January Blues? 

Is this the time when those well meaning intentions around your goals and resolutions start to waiver?

Have you heard of January Green?

I suspect that whilst you may be suffering the January Blues, you’ve never even heard of January Green.  Quite simply because its something that I use visually in my mind to help me get through the weeks in January when I’m finding it hard to stick to my goals.  Its simply called ‘Green’ because its the colour of spring and represents ‘Go!’ rather then ‘Stop’.

Its easy right now to lose motivation and lose sight of your goals.  We have lots of short days with uninspiring weather.  2 weeks of being really focused on our goals and temptation starts to sneak in.  So why not do what I do?  Take the time out to review the goal.  Really get in touch with the emotions and feelings around it.  How badly do you want this?

Consider the challenges that are likely to face you.  When and how will they occur?  Can you plan a solution to them now so that you are ready?  Can you enlist the help of anyone?  Perhaps warning a friend that you may lose your motivation will mean that they say the right thing at the right time.

So now, is a really great time to review those goals.  Don’t let them go stale, keep them fresh and alive and of course remember to:

Go Go Go!

What keeps you going when your motivation starts to waiver?

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New Year, New You?

 

As I start to write this blog post I’m worried about repeating myself. Why?

Well simply because as humans we are often creatures of habit.  I don’t know about you, but I feel myself going through the same motions every year.  1st January – come up with a barrow load of good intentions about what I’m giving up, losing weight or setting out to achieve.  The reality is that 25% of resolutions are broken within the first week or so I read somewhere on the internet so it must be true!!

So I sat down to write a post about having goals not resolutions.  Even the word goal suggests its something to aim towards rather than give up or deny. Only to realise that as a creature of habit I sat down to think all this through last year and even wrote a blog post about it.

So there we have it – a goal is a positive intention, something to aim for and if you wish to know more you can read about it in last years goal post (no pun intended).

I do however believe that the New Year is a really good time to be thinking about what we want to achieve and what we have already achieved.  So let me share some top tips:

  1. Complete a Personal Annual Review of achievements.  My post Achieving A PAR written last year tells you more, but just give yourself time to celebrate those successes.
  2. Make sure your goals have a positive intention, that is something that you want to aim for rather than give up.  My post about making goals count for you tells you more about making goals really work for you.
  3. Always keep goals in your vision.  Write them in your diary, create a vision board or whatever you need to do to remind you that you have them, but never ever be hard on yourself if you let your intentions slip or fall behind.  This is not a moment to give up, just the right time to refocus.

Happy New Year – I’d love to hear all about your goals and resolutions.  Please feel free to share them here.  Often telling someone else can help you remain focused.

 

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How Do You Eat An Elephant? – And What If You Have More Than One To Eat?

So how do you eat your  elephant?

The common answer is one bit at a time.  I’m sure many of you will have come across this before.  Its a common analogy for tackling your goals.  But its not always that easy is it?

At this time of year I start thinking about my goals.  All that stuff that I haven’t done yet but intended to do this year and all that stuff I want to do next year.  It can be a bit over- whelming.  And of course some of the goals require you to tackle many bits in one go – so the one bite at a time rule goes straight out of the window.

I quite like to use a priorities grid.   Simply draw a line right down the centre of your page vertically and then another one horizontally across the middle.  Label them:

High Priority – Quick to do

High Priority – takes time

Low Priority – Quick to do

Low Priority – Takes Time

Now you can list all your goals in the quadrants.  This tends to work best if you can break your goals down into all the little stages and split these across the quadrants.

Now start to tackle the High Priority – Quick to do tasks – it will amaze you how much you can achieve in an afternoon or even just an hour.  It’ll help you tackle that elephant one bite at a time AND multitask in getting more than one of those goals heading in the right direction.

 

So how do you tackle your goals? I’m sure my readers would love to hear your solutions too.

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Taking the Plunge

Whilst part of the role of this blog is to inspire and motivate its readership, I also wanted it to be an outlet for some of my more personal thoughts and a record of my own personal learning journey.

Those more observant, regular readers will have notice a new page appear “Thin from Within”.  Ever since I first trained as a personal development coach I have wanted to do something for those people who pay their fees to weight-watchers and similar clubs every week just to be disappointed that they once again have failed to loose weight because they can’t stick to a really strict diet. The minute they treat themselves to one thing they’ve broken their diet and loss of motivation can set in.

With no diet plans, the Thin From Within concept works on the basis that deep down we all know – to lose weight we put less in and increase our exercise levels. That requires motivation and will-power.  Its a process I truly believe in – I have dieted as strongly as anyone else over the years and true success only comes when I have the right mindset.

I’m now running a local club in Leek, my home town.  I need to compete against the powerful advertising of Slimming World and Weight Watchers and I need to get people in through my door.

So I’ve been out and put up posters, I’ve pushed it on Facebook and Twitter, emailed my contacts, in fact I’ve done most things except….

Radio!

I rang the local station to see if I could get a bit of free PR.  They said “yes”.  “Great!” – I thought.  “Why don’t you come in?”

The strange thing is, although I knew it would be the best thing, I wasn’t going to do it.  It puts me right outside my comfort zone.  Yet, saying yes was incredibly easy.  And now I’ve said yes I’m having to go through all the steps to do it.

There is a moral to this story.  If you’re not sure whether you’ve got everythng you need to meet your goal, why not take the first step.  The rest is sure to follow.

By the time you get to read this, I will have done my radio stint.  If you want to know how I went on – come back next week.

A diet rich in soy and whey protein, found in ...

Diets – The missing ingredient

Whether you’re trying to put weight on or loose it, weight management presents numerous difficulties – take that from someone who has spent over half her life watching her weight.

I’ve tried counting calories, weight-watchers points or doing slimming worlds red and green days.  I’ve even tried meal replacement plans.  Going to the gym presents its own challenges.  When I find the motivation to go it can make me hungry so the first thing I do is break the diet.

I don’t claim to be a nutritionist or dietician; however I know a few of the basics.  The most basic rule of all is that if you eat less calories and exercise more – you will loose weight.  Continued weight loss can only then be sustained by maintaining this balance.  This is how diets like weight-watchers work for a while.  Thing is, we achieve our goal, or get bored and increase our eating habits again and with it gain weight.   We can’t cut out all those lovely things we like to eat forever.

The other problem I find with diet clubs is that we can turn up every week, pay our money, look disappointedly at the scales and have put weight on.  We scratch our heads and can’t understand the weight gain, yet we do this week after week because we know it would be much worse if we didn’t go.

 

So what is the missing ingredient?

 

What is it that joining an ordinary diet club doesn’t give us?

 

The answer is simple and free – we just need to get our heads around it.

The answer is:

MOTIVATION

 

 

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