We all are on the journey of our life. when we see our previous experiences, it can be an eye-opener for our perspective and can help us to set a new vision for the future as a ‘New year resolution’. It helps us to see the journey of our own lives and helps us to learn something new consciously or subconsciously depending on our perception and perspective of our learning.
Though in this journey, we are not alone, some people take this journey, as a learning process while some as a failure depending on their thought and learning process and hence, helps them to take the actions accordingly.
A very welcome to the new year 2022!
Almost, most of us plan every year as a resolution at some point. Each of us has a different goal and depending on that we usually plan a resolution, it can be anything starting from a fitness goal to a career goal or maybe some adventure goal or so on the list is endless!
During this journey, we put so much pressure on ourselves that sooner or later we fail to continue it for some of the reason and hence we see it as a failure and lose our confidence to continue it. While others make it happen effortlessly, or the way they planned and hence, become successful in their goal. So, why does this happen, why all can’t achieve their goal?
How did the new resolution form?
“New year resolution” tradition is more commonly seen in the western and eastern world. The new year resolution originated far back around 150 BC by making promises to the God Janus, for whom the month of January is mentioned. According to Roman mythology, Roman God Janus has two faces, one looking backward and one looking forwards, allowing him to look at the past and look forward to the future and hence it became a symbolic time. That’s the reason Janus was called the God of doors, gates, and transition. That is the beginning and endings of conflict like life and death, war and peace, and so on.
In mythology, Janus is usually depicted as a God of choices. It believes that God Janus will forgive the old wrong things in the previous year and if we make the right choices and promises he will bless us for the year ahead. Thus, the new year resolution was born!
What is a resolution?
Let understand what is resolution; so that we can increase our chances of sticking to our new goals for this year and the upcoming year. New year resolution, is nothing but the art of self-improvement by making positive changes or promises related to the personal pursuit. Most people, usually likely to set new goals at New year rather than at the start of the week(Monday), or month or before or after the holiday. However, the resolution can be set at any time. But, you should know why you are doing this resolution. There should be some objectives such as
reversing your disease or
improving your overall health,
achieving some goal in your study, career, and so on.
Here I mean to say is, there should be some goal. The goal can be a little critical to understand but there should be some objective that will help you to understand why are you perceiving that goal. For example- Is it for your health or yourself or your self-esteem? or is it for your career or is it for your kid or related to kids? hence that will help you to maintain, or to stick to achieving your goal. If the goals are unrealistic then there are chances of failing as we are not able to track the progress and or we may forget about it; if we get engaged with some other issues and or we give less priority to our goal. Hence, that may become the cause of failure. If we keep some small realistic goals that are measurable and achievable then we can see progress in that and hence we become successful to achieve progress in our goals. It means that the way we make or frame our resolutions can make a difference in our lives.
According to the study, if we make a common resolution (weight loss, exercise programs, or quitting smoking) at the start of the year, were more like to succeed, than those deciding to make changes at other times of the year. However, generally, people make resolutions of either avoiding or quitting something like sweets, alcohol or smoking, or social media, and on the other hand, some people make resolutions of developing their skills or habit such as exercising high intense twice a week or swimming twice a week or learning piano once in a week.
How to stick to your resolution?
It was observed that on average those who are on the goal of learning or developing new skills were more approachable to their goals than those who were on avoidance goal. This has been proved by a study done in 2007, even if we make the resolution at the start of the year, and even if they are confident of the success at the beginning, though they do make some positive changes to their lives, can get failed because of an unrealistic goal. The same study says only around 20-25% of people can achieve their goal more often if they are engaged with the goal setting and the goal should be small and measurable. Like losing some kilos rather than weight loss over some time. Setting goals means that a person has committed thought, emotion, and behavior towards attaining the goal. Vague goals reduce limited attention and resources. Whereas, specific goals require realistic time restrictions. However, It can be guided by goal-setting criteria or rules such as S.M.A.R.T mnemonic acronym. Although, the SMART acronym will stay the same goals and objectives can differ as per the purpose of the project. So, all goals should be small, measurable, achievable (attainable), realistic (relevant), and time-bound restrictions. It says that people who set specific and difficult goals perform better than individuals who set simple and easy goals as they are more connected and engaged with their goals; they create a positive relationship between their goal and performance by making constant positive and achievable thoughts. This has been proved by a study done by Locke, who researched the impact of goals on human activity and found that there is a positive relationship between clearly identified goals and performance.
Let have a look at steps to follow to achieve a specific goal.
1. know your goal- objective
2. the goal should be reasonable- be realistic
3. prepare in advance- to stay in tune
4. draw up your plan-how to overcome your temptation or barrier
5. write down a list of pros and cons- will help you be motivated
6. inform your family/friends/colleagues- to support you
7. appreciate yourself-give a reward that you enjoy but that does not conflict with your resolution.
8. prepare yourself- self-motivated rather than depending on others to motivate you
9. journal-monitor your progress. It will help you to remain on track.
10. practice-be consistent and continue to attempt till you achieve your goal.
Let's see this with an example:
Goal- Weight loss
Reasonable or realistic- 1 kg per week
Prepare in advance-
Clear all the junk food from the kitchen cupboard.
Start 10 min early from home so I can walk for 10 min.
Draw a plan to overcome your barrier-
Sweet (Chocolate)- can place it away from my eyesight. If needed can have one date or small piece of jaggery or some fruit
Pros- If I don’t eat sweets(Chocolate), it will help me to maintain my calorie intake, plus it will give me the option to eat some natural fruit to eat and nourish my body.
Cons- if I keep eating it (sweet), then it will increase my calorie intake plus it can fluctuate my blood sugar. Also, I’m carrying this genetic risk factor and I’m prone to pre-diabetic as per my blood parameters. It means I may have this disorder and may make me suffer from a lot of health issues in the future.
Inform- my family member knows about it but if I inform my friends and colleagues then they will help me to reach my weight loss goal. As they can see I’m suffering from certain health issues. They will support me and will not get hurt when I say no to any particular food treat.
Appreciate yourself- I’m so grateful that I have made those changes. I will pamper myself with a beautiful message at the spa.
Prepare yourself- once I lose my target weight I will be more able to do what I want, I will be more energetic. I can do more productive work. It will help me to fit in my favorite dresses. Which are so special to me. It will make me more beautiful if I do some makeover of myself like a haircut.
Journal-it will guide and help me mindfully, that I’m on my track, the checklist will help me if I’m missing on any nutrients.
It will help me to realize if certain things are not working for me then what else options can I do instead of that.
It will help me to achieve my exercise goal.
It will help me to motivate.
It will also help me to be grateful for all those small changes which are helping me to be a better version of myself.
Practice- all changes that I made are helping me to achieve my goal. I need to be consistent with my goal. I will practice and meditate every day to keep myself connected with my goal. Even if you fail or are not able to achieve your goal or if you are facing a blockage or barrier then you should try with a new resolution and try to look for another milestone to reach your goal and keep on trying and take it as a lesson learned.
It says a journey with a few bumps along the way will teach you and help you to understand your barrier and how to overcome along your barrier will help you to achieve your goal.