30 Steps to a Better Life – A New Year’s Resolution
Let me guess: 2018. Another year. Another New Year’s resolution. You want to lose weight or work out, make better financial decisions like getting out of debt or saving money, quit smoking or drinking, find a better job, or find that special someone.
Setting a New Year’s resolution isn’t anything new. In fact, 40% of Americans set one every year. A research conducted by The University of Scranton, states that just 9.2% percent of people felt they were successful in achieving their resolution.
Why You Fail
So why do so many people who start a New Year’s resolution end up failing?
1. Your goals aren’t specific.
– Most of the goals are vague like “I want to lose weight”. How much weight? “I want to travel more” Where to? Your goals need to be specific so you can follow through.
2. There is no set plan.
– Do you want to lose weight? Awesome! Now, what’s your course of action? How will you lose that weight? Not sure? If you don’t have a plan, educate yourself and create one.
3. You revert back to old behaviors.
– It’s not hard to revert back to what’s comfortable and what you know is easy. It’s easy to stay under the warm covers instead of getting out of bed when your alarm goes off. It’s easy to come up with an excuse about why things are working out for you. It’s easy to be discouraged. Easy choices, hard life. Hard choices, easy life.
4. It’s just an urge.
– You aren’t truly passionate about what your goals are. Find what makes you want to achieve that goal. Is it for yourself? Your kids? Your spouse? If it’s just an urge, make it urgent.
5. No accountability – No results.
– This is difficult to do at times but in order to succeed with your goal, you must hold yourself accountable. Track your progress. Little wins along the way go further than you think. Can’t do it yourself? Find an accountability buddy!
How to keep going!
You’ve been there before: Two weeks go by and you’re doing great. 14 straight days. Week 3 comes and you only do 6 out of 7 days. Week 4? 4 days maybe 5. Soon enough it’s February and your resolution is now an official failure. So how do you stay on track this year?
An acronym related to goals that I learned in the Air Force is S.M.A.R.T.
Your goals should be clear and specific. Answer who, what, when, why where in detail.
Assess your progress along the way to make sure you are on track and meeting deadlines.
Your goals need to be realistic and attainable.
Your goals must mean something to you.
Set a deadline in order to accomplish your goals. However, make it realistic.
“30 Steps To A Better Life”
So while you’re out there setting your New Year’s resolutions I’ve created “30 Steps to a Better Life”. These quick tips will help you achieve your goals while building a better life.
- The two-minute rule. If it takes two minutes or less, do it immediately.
- Find an accountability buddy
- Celebrate your small milestones along the way to your goal.
- Be aware of your being – mentally, physically and, emotionally. Track when you are on highs and on lows.
- Laugh each day, even at yourself!
- Teach something new to someone every day.
- Learn something new every day.
- Drink more water.
- Set your watch 10 minutes fast so you arrive early and don’t feel rushed.
- Turn off social media and unplug.
- Read before bed even if it’s just one chapter.
- Get rid of old and unused belongings. Go through clothes, cupboards, and electronics. Donate them!
- Post your goal on the bathroom mirror so you see it every day. Or your favorite quote!
- List 5 things you are grateful for. Everyday.
- Plan your day the night before. Even set things out and pack your bag.
- Do a random act of kindness for someone.
- Take a 15-minute break for yourself.
- Give thanks and praise to others.
- Call an old friend or family member.
- Get a good night’s sleep.
- Enjoy the moment. (Cliché yes, but enjoy it.)
- Judge others less.
- Always take the stairs. One day you’ll wish you could.
- Sit in silence for 10-15 minutes and let your mind wander.
- Stretch and improve your posture.
- Agree to disagree during arguments. Educate yourself on the other person’s viewpoint.
- Do the right thing even when nobody is watching. Integrity matters.
- Don’t compare your life to others. Just compare yourself to who you were yesterday and be better.
- Love everyone the same.