Did you know over 90% of people completely fail when it comes to actually following through with their New Year’s Resolution?
On top of that, more than half of that 90% give up on their resolution before February is even over!
Why do we suck so badly at completing something that is meant to make our lives better!?
I am not preaching, because I too have completely whiffed at following through with a New Year’s Resolution. It takes one little slip up and then we fall back into our old ways, and all improvement stops. It’s a shitty feeling.
I remember in college I tried to give up fast food for an entire year.
In literally 3 weeks I found myself elbow-deep in a bag of McDonalds, shoving half of the Dollar Menu into my face.
I let that one slip up derail my entire anti-fast food efforts, and I was back to my old ways before I knew it. (Let it be known I now only reserve fast food for the occasional drunken night when my soul yearns for a McChicken sandwiched between two McDoubles. It’s disgustingly glorious.)
Let’s make 2017 a little different.
Let’s make 2017 a little f*ckin’ awesome.
It sounds like a cliche but you are the only person on this earth that is responsible for making yourself better.
You have everything it takes to break old habits that are not enriching your life by replacing them with habits that make you exponentially more awesome.
Whether your resolution is to become more fit, more organized, or less prone to hitting the snooze button 12 times before you find yourself running 20 minutes late every morning, follow these 3 rules to actually stick with your New Year’s Resolution.
It’s a lot simpler than you think.
Rule 1: Make A Resolution That Is Purposeful and Specific
Make your resolution personally purposeful.
Think about an aspect of your life that you want to enrich and revolve your resolution around improving it. Avoid overly generalized resolutions about “being healthier” or “worrying less” and find one that pertains to you and your current situation.
For example, if in 2016 you found yourself overwhelmed with work and you began to neglect the important relationships in your life, center your resolution around strengthening your ties with your loved ones.
If in 2016 you let your personal health slip because of stress and other responsibilities, center your resolution around finding ways to prioritize yourself, your health and your happiness so that 2017 is a joyous year filled with awesome ass-kicking experiences.
Make sure to really sit down and think about SPECIFIC areas of your life that could use some enriching, and focus your resolution on improving those areas.
Make sure your resolution contains some specifics that are tangible and measurable.
This will make you more successful because you will be able to gauge how well you are executing your resolution.
Again, if you choose general goals such as “be healthier” or “worry less”, you will have no way to really measure if you are making a change or not.
Instead of making your resolution to “be healthier”, get more specific by adding some parameters.
For instance, “My New Year’s Resolution Is To Prioritize My Health By Not Eating Processed Foods And Going To The Gym For 60 Minutes 3x A Week” is a hell of a lot better because you clearly know if you are being successful or not.
Did you not eat processed foods today? WIN!
Did you go to the gym for 60 minutes, 3 days this week? HELL YEAH.
By getting specific, you give yourself a clear indicator of how successful you are being at improving your life through your resolution.
Rule 2: Have A Plan, Ya Jackass
I feel kinda dumb saying this, but in order to follow through on a really awesome, meaningful New Year’s Resolution, you need to have a plan.
“Becoming healthier” isn’t just going to happen by eating a salad occasionally or taking the stairs a few times.
You need a plan in place in order to keep you motivated and on track so that you can actually be successful.
I’m going to elaborate with the fitness example because that is my area of expertise.
Let’s say you followed Rule 1, and you made a resolution that is going to address an area of your life that you felt was lagging a little bit in 2016.
You sit down and think real hard, and you recollect that in 2016 you let your health get shiity and as a result you felt sluggish, tired, bloated and slightly depressed because of how out-of-shape you looked and felt.
Clearly, addressing this aspect of your life with a passionately designed New Year’s Resolution is a purposeful way to improve yourself so that in 2017 you’re a lean, mean “200 likes on my instagram pic” getting machine.
So now, we have established a personal area of our life that we want to improve because it will make 2017 more enjoyable.
Now, we need to get specific.
So we finally settle on “my New Year’s Resolution is to improve my health and fitness to improve the way I look AND feel by working out 3x a week and following a nutrition plan”.
Great, we have followed Rule 1 to a tee and are ready to go kick ass. Right?
Hold your god damn horses.
Our resolution is good in theory, but if we do not have the details of our plan in place, our fitness efforts are going to fizzle out in a few months.
Going to the gym 3x a week is great, but if you are not effectively utilizing your time while you are there, you are not going to be as successful as you could be.
If you have a plan of attack for each workout session, you will be able to confidently walk into the gym, kick ass for 60 minutes, and walk out knowing you have made yourself better by getting you one step closer to crushing your New Year’s Resolution.
If your nutritional plan is simply to count calories, you may go crazy trying to limit your food intake.
If you have a well-researched plan that tells you what nutrient-dense foods to eat, when to eat it, and how much of it to eat, you are far more likely to stick with your plan instead of getting bored.
The above example is specific to fitness, but I hope you see how it can apply to any resolution you come up with.
Think about how you are actually going to accomplish sticking with your New Year’s Resolution by brainstorming any possible obstacles that may stand in your way.
In the fitness example, not knowing what to do when you are at the gym is clearly an obstacle that would prevent you from being successful because your workouts would not produce a lot of results.
Not seeing results will lead to frustration.
And frustration leads to the abandonment of your resolution.
So think about potential obstacles that could keep you from sticking with your resolution, and make a plan so you can triumph over those obstacles like a bossss.
Rule 3: Get Some Support And Accountability
Remember how at the beginning of the article I said that you are the only person responsible for making yourself better?
Well, that’s still true, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t rely on friends and family to help keep your ass in check so that you are successful in accomplishing your life-enriching New Year’s Resolution.
Make your New Year’s Resolution known to the important people in your life, and emphasize to them how truly important it is to you that you stick with it.
Make it clear that life is way too short to keep re-exhibiting the same old habits that are ultimately making your life a little shittier and proclaim that you fully intend to take charge and conduct yourself like a bad mama-jama in the upcoming year.
Tell your friends and family your specific plan for how you are going to accomplish your goal and then give your them your full permission to guilt trip/re-inspire you if you start slacking on your resolution.
Go ahead, call up your dear old grandma and tell her that she has your blessing to make you feel like a whiney lil’ betch if she finds out that you are skipping workouts and eating doritos. (Grandma’s don’t get mad, they just get disappointed).
Go ahead, tell your best friend that they are allowed to text you inspirational pics of Justin Beiber straight flexin’ to reinspire you to get your ass to the gym so that you can get shredded and prance around confidently in your boxer-briefs.
However you do it, just make it clear that your resolution is important to you, and that you would really appreciate your friends’ and family’s support.
Holding yourself accountable is a pretty simple concept.
Taking responsibility is something all grown ups have to do (except Dan Bilzerian, he threw a stripper off a roof and got away with it) so apply this responsibility to your New Year’s Resolution.
Intensely fight the urge to slip up and then validate that slip up with excuses.
Instead, refuse to slip up.
Identify that your resolution is a way to make your life more enjoyable, more fun, more fulfilling, more healthy, and know that keeping your resolution is your way of achieving it.
That being sad, making a change is hard, so have a few tools in place to utilize to keep you on track.
Again back to using the fitness example, if your resolution is to hit the gym 3x a week and complete an organized exercise program, simply hang a calendar up in your room and mark down the days of that month that you are going to the gym to complete your workout.
Every day you go to the gym and complete your exercise program for that day, you check it off.
That way, at the end of the month, you can look at that calendar and see how successful you were (or if you’re doing THIS kick-ass workout program, you should also be able to look in the mirror and see how successful you were).
If making a beneficial change to your life is truly a priority for you, then enlist the help of someone who knows what they’re doing.
If fitness is your goal, find a fitness coach or a well-structured workout program that will give you support and accountability.
If eating better is your goal, hire a nutritional coach to assemble a guide for you so that you can develop better eating habits.
If improving yourself is important, you might have to invest a little to make your life more enjoyable.
It’s you we’re talking about, so it’s totally worth it.
Some Old Guy Once Said
Discipline is just choosing between what you want now and what you want most.
I don’t actually know who said this, but I can picture some old-timey football coach saying this to his players before a big game. Like all quoteable quotes, it is a little cliche, but it makes perfect sense.
What is said about discipline can be applied to New Year’s Resolutions.
Odds are, you make a New Year’s Resolution to try to improve some aspect of your life that you’ve wanted to improve for some time now.
Maybe you’ve tried in the past and have failed.
Maybe you’ve never tried at all and this will be your first crack at it.
But if you make something your New Year’s Resolution, it is usually because it addresses a matter that is important to you.
If something is important to you, follow through with it, ya dumby!
Make a resolution and stick to it.
If you are ever tempted to veer away from your resolution (aka me and the McDonalds massacre of 2012) remember the quote from above.
Choose between what you want now and what you actually want most.
Listen Up, A**hole!
I didn’t mean to call you an asshole.
I just wanted to get your attention.
Because I care about you!
This year I challenge you to beat the hell out of average as much as you possibly can.
Avoid all the common New Year’s Resolutions and make one that applies to you and your situation.
If you want to get healthy, don’t just proclaim that you will eat more salads.
Dig deep and figure out WHY you want to be healthier, leaner and more badass and then announce to the whole damn world (or just your friends and instagram followers) that you are going to embark on a year-long journey to make your life more awesome.
This year, you are going to step out of your comfort zone to make your life better.
This year, you are going to commit to a plan to make your life better.
This year, you are going to not-give-a-shit what anybody else thinks to make your life better.
A few weeks ago, I remembered the 4 year anniversary of my mother’s passing. She was everything to me and had taught me some pretty cool shit while she was alive.
What I have learned most from her is that life is exceptionally short, and it is crazy to spend another minute being anything except your best self.
So, use this New Year to pursue a resolution that is going to allow you to be your best self.
Your best self doesn’t have to be perfect.
Your best self doesn’t have to be UBER-succesful.
Your best self is simply when you begin to take full advantage of all the gifts you have been blessed with by going out and experiencing awesomeness throughout your day while sharing those gifts with the people you care about.
That’s pretty much it.
So stick to the 3 rules discussed in this article, and you’ll knock your New Year’s Resolution out of the park.
Make 2017 way better than 2016.
It’s a lot simpler than you think.
Guarantee Yourself Success In 2017
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