As the year draws to a close many of us inevitably think about the year ahead and what we want to achieve.
For some of us however, it is all too easy to fall into the trap of making a long list of goals but never sticking to them. Life’s constant changes (and challenges) are often to blame as we forget about our goals and slip back into old habits.
Take a look below for five tips to help you stick to your goals this year.
1. Make success achievable
When setting your goals, ensure they are specific and doable. Also, make sure the goals resonate with what’s true for you. Even if you do have to put some work into them, your goals should feel right, not contrived or forced.
2. Free up your emotions
Unexpressed emotions can build up and lead to stress, which often makes it harder for us to change our habits. Our minds find comfort in the familiar, so it’s default when faced with stress is to go back to what used to work (stress eating, smoking, drinking etc.).
Try to take a few minutes to really feel and express your emotions. You may find it helpful to write your feelings down or even draw a picture.
3. Challenge critical thoughts
We can self-sabotage ourselves with negative and critical thinking. Every time you catch yourself thinking something negative like “I can’t do this” or “I’ve blown it for today, I might as well start tomorrow”, find contradictions to support your goals. Remind yourself that you are doing this for you.
4. Become accountable
Get yourself a goal buddy, someone who also wants to make a change. Schedule regular check-ins where you can discuss your progress and any stumbling blocks you’ve come up against. Having someone to ‘report’ to in this way will add a sense of accountability, making it more likely that you’ll stick to your goals. It also allows the two of you to support each other and give advice when things aren’t going to plan.
5. Learn to rebound
If you have a lapse, don’t see it as a failure – see it as a learning curve. Look at the situation and try to uncover what the cause of it was and what you might do next time instead. Every day is a chance to try again.