The New Year is just around the corner which means that it is the perfect time to start thinking about your goals and resolutions for 2018.
Unfortunately, despite people’s efforts to establish resolutions, not many of them are accomplished by the end of the year.
Studies show that 80% of New Year’s resolutions fail by mid-February.
More often than not I hear people say they want to start working out, make healthier choices, drink less, read more, etc. And while all this is important, I find that some crucial things continuously get left out of people’s resolutions, things that if tackled could lead to the accomplishment of many of your goals.
So, if you are one of the many people (myself included), who have ever abandoned a New Year’s resolution, here are 5 key things you should consider this upcoming year.
#1 Stop Procrastinating
Studies show that one of the biggest barriers that keeps people from accomplishing their goals is their desire to have fun instead of doing something that requires tons of work.
This should come as no surprise.
I mean let’s face it, having goals is great but some days all you want to do is turn on Netflix and binge watch the latest season of Stranger Things, or your all-time favorite episodes of Friends.
Doing something enjoyable and mindless is undoubtedly more appealing than dragging yourself to the gym at 6 am on a cold Monday morning, or reading a book when all you hear is people talking about the newest Netflix original.
We’ve all been there.
It’s okay to take a few days off to unwind, but the real problem is when procrastination begins to take over.
Procrastination = Sabotage
Procrastination is a hard habit to break, but that doesn’t make it impossible. When things get tough, and you begin to deviate from things that genuinely matter, take a moment to remind yourself what’s at stake.
Think about what you are trying to accomplish, and realize that the only person affected by your lack of action is yourself.
Here are a few more tips to help you combat procrastination:
As mentioned, giving yourself time to unwind and do something enjoyable is perfectly fine, but try to save that for the end of the day.
Recognize that the show everyone is talking about is probably as good as they say it is, so instead of fooling yourself into thinking you can watch 1 Episode, focus on things that matter first.
Commit to the task:
Focus on accomplishing your goals or to-dos rather than putting them off for tomorrow.
Because guess what? Tomorrow will be just as a struggle. It’s easier to put things off for later, but the rewards only come to those who put in the work.
Remind yourself why it’s important:
People always say “I have to workout” or “I need to read more,” but the truth is that you don’t “have to” or “need to” do anything.
You can, if you wish, sit back and do nothing at all. Throw all your cares out the window, and simply not give a crap. But you WANT to do these things. You WANT to be healthier, do better at work, and live a better life.
Remind yourself that you are doing these things for YOU.
Phrases like “need to” and “have to” can quickly lead to self-sabotage, but recognizing that you choose how to spend your time implies that you are in control of the results.
#2 Increase Your Confidence
Confidence is a tricky subject. In fact, a lot of people are often concerned about appearing overly confident because they are afraid of coming off as cocky, but trust me there’s a big difference.
When you are confident, it reflects in your attitude, your walk, your smile, etc.
Confidence is easy to recognize, and people who have it are more likely to be heard and taken seriously than people who are insecure.
Unfortunately, no matter how great you are, how awesome you’d be at that new job, or how much money your idea could save the company, no one will believe you if you don’t sell it.
Part of selling it means selling yourself. Believe that you are capable, smart, and can do what you set out to do.
Confidence overall will help you lead a happier life, so there’s no reason to avoid it.
Let go of the negative voices telling you it’s not possible. Tell them to go to hell and repeat to yourself that YOU can. The only person getting in the way of that is YOU.
Here are my favorite books to get your feeling like a bad ass: GirlBoss by Sophia Amoruso, The 7 Habits of Highly Successful People by Stephen Covey, Girl Code by Cara Alwill Leyba, Lean In by Sheryl Sandberg, and You Are a Badass by Jen Sincero.
#3 Become More Organized
If you’ve ever been to the gym without a workout plan in place, you’ve likely spent lots of time glancing around for something to do, or headed to the treadmill to pretend like you know what you’re doing.
The same thing applies in everyday life.
If you aren’t organized with your time and your to-do list, you’ll likely spend most of your day trying to figure out what to tackle next, instead of getting things done.
The good news is that if you take the time to get organized and plan your day ahead, things will quickly begin falling into place.
Getting organized may seem daunting at first, but if you’re consistent, it won’t be long before it becomes a habit.
Personally, I like to use old school pen/paper planners, such as the Erin Condren Life Planner or an A5 planner by Filofax, but there are plenty of tools to help you get organized.
If a physical planner is not exactly your thing, try a digital app, or the calendar on your phone.
Honestly, it doesn’t matter how you get organized, just as long as you do! So, try a few different things to find what works.
The best organization tool for you will be one that you enjoy using, one that keeps you on track, and one that has space for everything you need to jot down.
As a bonus, planning your day, and writing down all of your to-dos, helps relieve you from stress by allowing you to get things out of your mind and onto paper.
#4 Stop Comparing Yourself to Others
Social media has made it incredibly easy for us to compare our accomplishments and our lifestyle with that of others. But don’t fall into this trap!
When we compare ourselves to others, we waste valuable time comparing when instead we could be out there doing.
Don’t be consumed by what other people have or do.
Keep in mind that people only post what they want others to see. So while someone’s life may look perfect on Instagram, that’s not necessarily the case.
We all have flaws, problems, and worries, that’s what makes us unique, so stop comparing yourself. It’s just not worth it!
Use social media as a means to connect with others positively, to get inspired and motivated, rather than using it as a measure to see who is better.
#5 Challenge Yourself
You should never reach a point where you stop learning. No matter where you are in life, you should never stop pushing yourself to be better.
Challenge yourself to learn something new, to pick up a new skill, to adopt a new hobby or to learn a new language.
Developing new skills is exciting, and it opens the possibility of meeting new people, pursuing career opportunities that you didn’t think you qualified for, enhancing your resume, and having fun.
Yes, learning can be fun!
In fact, things can get quite boring when you stop learning. That’s why you often see successful people leave one great job for another – because they’ve learned everything they possibly could, and they’ve given it their all, so in retrospect, it’s time for a new challenge.
Challenges help us grow, so don’t be intimidated by them. Embrace them, seek them, and conquer them!
As the new year begins, try not to get overwhelmed by everything you have planned. Start off by taking note of everything you want to accomplish, and consider these 5 resolutions to help you get there.
If there are any resolutions you think should be included here, feel free to add them in the comments, I’d love to read about them.