2018 New Years Resolutions
The start of a new year is often a time for us to reflect on the year just gone, think about the year ahead and decide to make some changes for the better. Whether it be getting healthier, starting a new hobby or going somewhere you've always wanted to go, January is a time of promise. The future is as yet unwritten, you can make it whatever you like, how amazing is that?
With every social media outlet flooded with posts about turning over a new leaf and making changes, it can be an inspirational time where you feel motivated and empowered. This is your year, you're going to make it happen, you can see how your New Years Resolutions are going to change your life for the better. However, as January turns into February, and February into March, good intentions often fall by the wayside. So how can you make positive changes and ensure that you're able to stick to them?
We have 5 top tips for maintaining your 2018 New Years Resolutions.
1. Make sure you want to do them
There is absolutely no point in taking someone else’s goals and trying to make them your own. Choose resolutions that resonate with you, that you genuinely want to do. If you try to make a change but your heart isn't in it, it's not going to happen.
2. Make an End Of 2018 board
Get really clear about what you want. If you don't know what you want, it's difficult to decide what changes you need to make. Sometimes known as Dream Boards or Inspiration Boards, putting together pictures, words and items that represent your ideal life is a great way of getting really clear about what is important to you. It also provides motivation through the year to keep going. Canva or Pinterest are great digital ways of doing this. Often it can be an illuminating exercise, what you think you'd like sometimes isn't what you may have thought.
3. Make your resolutions aspirational but achievable
Be realistic. We may all want to be millionaires, pack in our job, travel the world or win a Grammy, but, unless you're Beyonce, these are unlikely to happen. When deciding on your New Years Resolutions, think about what you want your life to look like (use your End Of 2018 board) then think about how you can make this happen. It may be that you want to travel more. Travelling costs money and takes time, so it's unlikely that you're able to simply drop everything and head off to Bora Bora, but think about other ways you can make this goal happen. You may decide that Bora Bora is exactly where you want to go and you're going to spend this year saving your money and your holiday time so that you can bring in the New Year on a beautiful sandy beach. It may be that actually what appeals to you about travelling is meeting new people and discovering new cultures. You could book in cheaper holidays using Air BnB and the like (we have a great article on this) and also satisfy this goal through other means. Joining a language class, getting involved in a local club or becoming involved in an exchange program. Don't disregard goal because you think it's not possible, just get creative about how you can make it happen.
4. Make them enjoyable, not a chore
If you don't enjoy it, even if you want to do it, it's not going to happen. You might want to get fit. But this isn't going to happen if you decide to run every day and you hate running. Think about what you enjoy that can help you to achieve your goal. I hate doing accounts, but I have made all my spreadsheets purple and given each tab fun names to help me to 'want' to them and make the experience generally more enjoyable. If you get creative, you can make most things fun. Channel your inner Mary Poppins and her spoon full of sugar!
5. Make them a habit
There are various theories about how long it takes for a certain behaviour to become habit, but the general consensus is around a month. If you can do something consistently for 30 days, it is much more likely to become a long lasting behaviour. So whether it is learning a language, doing yoga, walking to work, cooking, using a diary or any other resolution, plan to do it throughout January to put you in good stead for the rest of the year.
Need some inspiration? Here are 37 possible positive life changes:
- Drink more water
- Exercise X amount a week
- Walk more
- Go to the theatre/comedy club/art gallery once a month
- Join a local club
- Get involved in a charity
- Have one day a week as 'Family Day'
- Learn to cook
- Do something new every day
- Learn a new language
- Read X amount of books a month
- Go back to college/university
- Move house
- Move job
- Make happiness your number one priority
- Eat breakfast
- Start the day with an affirmation
- Finish the day with 3 things you're thankful for
- Hug more
- Do one thing that scares you each month (doing karaoke for me!)
- Learn a new skill
- Make your house/space a calm and enjoyable place to be
- Meet new people
- Start a business
- Write a book
- Start a blog
- Get to know your neighbours
- Get more organised (we have a great article about how to organise your desk here)
- Have phone/table/tech free time (especially before bed)
- Get on top of your finances
- Learn a musical instrument
- Meet your idol
- Smile more
Whilst it can be a great time to assess and feel inspired, it can also be a time where you feel overwhelmed. Try not to compare, keep it simple and think about what you want from the year ahead. Here is your opportunity to create the life you want.
It would be great to hear some of your New Years Resolutions, do comment below and let us know how you're going to achieve them.