Happy New Year! We hope it is off to a good one.
Now that we have made it through all of the end of year advice on new years resolutions and we have had a couple of weeks to quickly forget all of the resolutions we have made, here is a quick, if tough, message.
New Year’s resolutions are for chumps. They basically don’t work. According to a 2-year old article at Business Insider, 80% of New Year’s resolutions fail. Why?
New Year’s resolutions are merely proclamations
Webster defines “resolution”, in part as, “the act or process of resolving: such as. a : the act of analyzing a complex notion into simpler ones. b : the act of answering : solving.”
The very big difference between these 2 definitions is “action”. A resolution, by definition, is an act. You have resolved to take action. Whereas a New year’s resolution is, by definition, a promise – a proclamation. Words.
Why is that distinction important? Because of the old lesson our parents taught us…actions speak louder than words.
So what do we do?
The fact of the matter is that most successful actions do begin with a proclamation, but there are a few tricks, some of the most important as follows:
- Begin by stating the result that you want first, as opposed to what you are going to do. For example, instead of saying you will go to the gym 3 days a week is a weak proclamation. Why is going to the gym 3 days a week important to you? What result do you want from it?
- Frame your proclamation in positive terms. For example, instead of saying, “I need to lose 20 pounds,” which connotes the negative “I am overweight” and instead state it in terms that elicit more positive connotations, such as “I will be fit.” Consider why fitness is important to you. Vanity? Health and wellness? A desire to participate in an activity you find difficult or impossible if unfit? It matters because the next thing to do is…
- Draft a plan. The plan may include an objective of going to the gym 3 days a week…but the resolution itself is not to go to the gym.
- Get a coach. Solicit someone to play the role of your coach, if for no other reason, to help you hold yourself accountable.
- Take action. A positively framed proclamation, a well devised plan, and the assignment of a coach are all worthless unless you take action.
- Track progress. As you begin to see positive results, you will be more inspired to keep going until eventually, your resolution has become a habit – simply a way of life for you.
It’s true in personal life and in business
Apply all of these same principles to both your personal life and your business. Contact us to see how our solutions and services might help.