The New Year’s Resolution. It’s a phrase that brings to mind the pledging of unrealistic goals, only to keep at it for a few days before giving up. In fact, according to a 2014 research survey, 45% of people make resolutions but only 8% stick to them(1).
To help you stay motivated to follow through in 2015, here are 5 tips to help you stay on track.
1. Set a realistic end goal
If your resolution is to get fit and healthy, it’s probably not realistic to expect that you’ll be running marathons within the month. One of the most common reasons why people give up so easily on their resolutions is because they’ve set unrealistic expectations for themselves. Start off with small goals before working towards the bigger ones. Aim for 1km rather than a marathon at the end of the first month. This is a far more effective way of ensuring that you’ll definitely stick with it and achieve that resolution!
2. Announce it on social media
With social media playing an increasingly larger part of our day to day lives, taking to the keyboard and sharing your goals with your ‘friends’ or your ‘followers’ is a motivating factor in itself. In fact, studies have shown that making a formal declaration of your intentions increases your chance of actually achieving that goal by 33%. If you don’t follow through with your promise, you will potentially have dozens of people asking you what happened. Who wants to have that conversation?
3. Set yourself a single goal
Another mistake that people often make is giving themselves a list of resolutions to try and achieve. Bad idea. You might be a natural at multi-tasking, but committing to more than one thing at a time, especially if they’re quite large tasks, may in turn act as a de motivator. Keep in mind that we only have a certain amount of willpower and energy needed to carry out all of these resolutions, plus you also have your day to day lives to live as well. Having a singular goal to work towards may increase the likelihood of you actually achieving it in the end because you can focus more energy on it.
4. Reward Yourself
It should never be all work and no play when it comes to working towards achieving resolutions! If you achieve your resolution or are making good progress, reward yourself with something that doesn’t conflict with your resolution. For example if your goal was to eat better in 2015, go out and buy that cute pair of shoes you’ve been eyeing off. Working towards a reward can be very motivating for some people.
5. Put your money where your mouth is
As an added incentive for you to stick to your resolutions, why not pledge some money to a worthy cause? Statistics show that you are 72% more likely to achieve your goal if money is put on the line. Promise or Pay is a mobile responsive website where supporters are encouraged to financially back their promises by donating to a charity or organisation of their choice. It doesn’t have to be large amounts of money, but just the knowledge that your hard earned cash is on the line would be enough to make anyone stick with it.
(i) University of Scranton, Journal of Clinical Psychology, 2014