Sticking to your new year resolutions?

clip_image002Well it’s just over a week into the New Year and those of you who have made resolutions may already be facing challenges.

 It’s said that the New Year, although traditionally a time for ringing in the new, may not be the best time to make changes because of the various pressures on us at this time of the year.  New work targets and deadlines, all those goodies left over from Christmas, the added pressures on our finances, the weather etc, sometimes conspire to make it that bit more difficult to stick to plans and of course relying on willpower alone seldom works.

 If, however, you have resolved to change something in your life, don’t be despondent.  Good on you for being prepared to change something that will be of benefit to you in the long term.  Sure, you may slip up or feel like giving up but take it in your stride – do it in little stages and focus on the steps you’re taking towards that end goal.   Make sure each step is realistic and achievable and keep moving towards your goal instead of giving up when you encounter a setback.   Accept that you will have some hiccups rather than focusing on what might go wrong.   There will always be external factors that can have an influence over your best intentions.   Be prepared for them and deal with them rather than either dwelling on them or ignoring them.   Avoiding them will only make them seem worse.  If you’re prepared you’ll be more able to cope with anything that does go wrong. 

 Also, accept that you’re human and do sometimes make mistakes.  Learn from any mistakes, don’t dwell on them.   Acknowledge any fears you may have – write them down and then write down the benefits of facing those fears and achieving your goals.   This will help you face them and keep you motivated.  Believe in yourself even if you feel afraid.

 Share your goals with your friends and seek their support and remember to reward yourself for each small step along the way (a nice long soak in a bath, a refreshing walk,  a good book, time out to listen to your favourite music or something equally enjoyable and relaxing).  Getting started is often the hardest part and you’ve already done that so go for it!