With 2018 about to come to a close and 2019 coming in hot – or cold if you’re in the northern hemisphere – you may be thinking about New Years Resolutions.
I know I know, every year we set them and then every year we forget them. So this year let’s go against all odds and actually set ourselves up for success so we can achieve our goals before 2020.
To pull it off this year you’re going to have to put some strategies in place to make start a new routine that sticks.
Get Crystal Clear
Before you start your midnight countdown and popping bottles, take a time out and really think about what your goals are. Write them down. And ask yourself:
“Why are these goals important to you?”
Starting new habits or routines can be challenging so if you’re adding a gym membership to the list but you know you have no intention of going then reassess.
If you know exactly why you want to do something, it’s going to be a lot easier to get back on that horse when it bucks you off in February or March.
So get real with yourself! If you know that exercising regularly is going to give you more energy to play with your kids or eating better will give you more clarity at work then it’s a no brainer that you’ve got to stick with the program.
Consult Your Calendar
If you’re going to successfully add something new to your routine, it’s going to take up some time. Zoom out and see what your regular week looks like and where you can fit your new habit in. How many time’s per week? Is it first thing in the morning or right after work?
Once you have determined an appropriate time to schedule your new habit, don’t pencil it in, write that shit in with a sharpie! You have already determined that this is something that you need and that is important to you, so treat it as if it is as serious as a big meeting or a hot date.
You wouldn’t blow off your boss or your boyfriend so treat yourself with the same respect.
Get the Gear
If you’ve decided to start a regular yoga practice, get a mat. Maybe you’re going to start eating healthier. Do you have quality cooking tools? Ready to learn Spanish? Well then you better find a teacher and buy a notebook.
If you are serious about succeeding, first you need to get started. And getting started is the hardest part! But, it’s a whole lot easier if you have the tools to get the job done.
Find an Accountability Buddy
It can be excruciatingly hard to stay on track. Even if you are making positive shifts for the best reasons and have every intention of following through, it is so easy to get off track. One of the best ways to keep your eye on the prize is to have someone to help you stay accountable. This could be a friend who already has good habits, or someone trying to start a new routine with you. Or, you might even hire someone like a trainer or a coach.
It can be all too easy to bail on yourself but that’s much harder to do when you’re paying for someone’s help or are potentially letting someone else down.
Measure Your Progress
When you decide to start a new routine you are doing so with a goal in mind. Perhaps you want to get healthier, or in better shape. Maybe you want to save more money or learn another language. No matter what your goals are get crystal clear about what they are. I like to use the S.M.A.R.T. acronym. This stands for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Timely. When you get smart about your goal setting, you are able to see your progress. And, when you can see your progress, keeping up with your new routine can feel a whole lot less like a drag and a lot more awesome.
You’ve Got This!
As this year comes to a close take some time to reflect what is really important to you. What do you want to achieve in the year to come and what are you going to need to do to get there? Making a plan to succeed can turn your dreams into reality. So let’s get started, cause 2019 is going to be your best year yet!