5 Ways To Get What you Want Without New Year Resolutions!
As we wander through into the new year it’s good to be thinking about what you would like to be, do or have. But not just for the new year; every day, every week and every month too! Although the New Year is a good time to be making new decisions about taking action and transformation, it’s important to implement this way of thinking in your every day life so you can always be flexible and open to change. Most of the time when we incorporate grueling and arduous rules and restrictions in the short term, it can have the opposite result. Suddenly you discover you can’t “stick to the rules” or you “just don’t have enough willpower” or you’re just “a big failure”. The sabotage cycle begins and you feel worse than you did before.
So here’s some reflective thinking and ideas to get you moving in the right direction and avoiding the pressure of hard hitting New Years Resolutions:
1. Celebrate when you fall off track
Every year with my good intentions in January, I decided that this would be the year I was going to lose all my excess weight! And once I had lost weight, I was going to feel fab! Then time after time, year after year, I couldn’t understand why I continuously failed. Why could I not just simply change my diet and exercise for a few months and lose weight?
Habits and behaviors aren’t something that can be magically broken overnight. They are ingrained into our inner processing machine named the subconscious mind, and breaking long term habits and behaviours takes time to adjust. Expecting miracle changes within 1 week is setting unrealistic results and limits our flexibility along the way. In order to lose the amount of weight I wanted to shift, I needed to implement a whole spectrum of change which certainly took longer than a few months.
Allow yourself the chance to adjust to your new routine and find ways to celebrate every single step you take towards your desired outcome. Although you may not be looking to lose weight, the same structure and attitude applies to anything you want to change, certainly if it’s a habit or behaviour. You are always doing the best you know how so instead of punishing yourself for slipping up or going off track, celebrate that you have acknowledged this and tune in and ask what the reason was for this small set back. You are much more likely to succeed when you enjoy the journey.
2. Be nice to yourself
We can be so hard on ourselves when we want change very quickly. How about working on the relationship you have with yourself? Perhaps you have one of those little voices inside your head telling you that you aren’t good enough or you’re too fat/thin/hopeless. We can learn to accept that we are all on our own little journeys together, all intending to get to our destination in different ways. As we move through these journeys it’s an opportunity to learn more about ourselves so we can grow and build up our knowledge and experience and become better at achieving what we want. Compliment yourself on a daily basis and communicate as though you are encouraging a friend who is working towards the same goal.
3. What DON’T you want?
Discovering what we DO want instead of what we DON’T want is the first step in being able to go after it. If you struggle to understand what you do want, write a list of all the things you don’t want. This will then allow your thinking to be much clearer and you can work towards what you DO want. However, give yourself a chance to move towards getting it and focus daily on your requests. Having gratitude and noticing all the things that are going well for you is extremely important to being able to achieve change.
4. Who do you spend your time with?
If you are looking to change something or start something up, consider the relationships you have with the people around you. What impact do they have on you achieving what you want? Do they support your ideas and have a positive attitude to what you are doing? The people whom you surround yourself with frequently have a big impact on your success and confidence in your ideas. If you are encircled by negativity, or people who don’t believe in you, it can be hard to sustain the belief in yourself. You can never have too many friends so consider if making some new ones would have a greater impact on your ability to feel motivated and successful.
5. What is your fear?
One of the greatest barriers to achieving what we want is fear. This fear is buried deep within the subconscious mind and acts as a protector and nurturer. Some examples are; fear of the unknown, fear of failure, fear of success, fear of rejection etc. When we put too much pressure on ourselves we can start to feel a bit jittery about it, and even worse when we tell all our friends what we are going to do, we have to see it though right? Or what will they think about us?!
When it came to my own goals around weight loss, I needed to work out what was getting in the way of my success, what my fear was. I sought myself many resources that helped me to discover the patterns that were sabotaging my goals. In addition I broke down the journey into small tiny steps. I eliminated the things that made me feel worse about myself such as throwing the scales in the dustbin (I did this in 2006 and have never looked back!). I set myself small manageable tasks that felt realistic and most importantly, I had to feel good about myself too.
Next time you find yourself falling off track, stop to notice what your barriers are, what would happen if you DID achieve your outcome, and what would happen if you DIDN’t? This can be a nice little exercise if you write a list or do a mind map with each of those questions with your answers below.
Good luck and Happy New Year!