It's February, How Are Those "Resolutions" Coming?
It is real life convo time. How are those "resolutions" coming friends? Are some of you feeling a bit exhausted, tired, or unmotivated? Naturally, as most of us have created resolutions rather than goals, you are probably at the point of wanting to give up. That is because Goals and Resolutions are two very different things. They. Are. So. Different (insert clap back here). Goals are so inspiring and personal. They should be something that makes us excited to get up each day and chase after. So here is why those resolutions you all have created may not be working out so well.
"New Year, New Me."
If I had a follow on Instagram for every meme I've seen with this tagline, I would have been Insta famous by 1/1/18. Resolutions don't work. What, I am crushing your dreams of a new and better life in 2018? Sorry friends, but the truth is annoying and rocks our reality a bit. By definition, a resolution is the action of solving a problem, dispute, or contentious matter. That does not sound too "new year, new me," does it? Resolutions are not realistic. They are a hard end to a perceived problem in your life. While wanting to change your life in a year sounds great, change doesn't happen overnight. My therapy background has taught me that change is one of the number one reasons a person seeks help. Something in their life needs to change in order to make them feel better. What if we thought of change as a process that we need to welcome and accept (all the beauty and the ugliness). After reading this post, I hope you see the necessity of setting Goals rather than Resolutions and how even the most stubborn of people can achieve all they hope in their life, in due time.
Goals, goals, goals.
They are everywhere. Social media, books, conversations, the gym, blog posts, even department stores. Goals surround us each and every day. By definition, a goal is the object of a person's ambition or effort; an aim or desired result. I'll say it again for those in the back, an AIM. Goals are something that any one of us can input in to our lives but being careful to remind ourselves that a goal is an aim at change and not an end all be all to our happiness and self worth is the momentous key. One of the number one reasons that individuals do not achieve their "goals" in the new year and fall off the wagon by March is because they are, in reality, setting resolutions. They are connecting something that they perceive as wrong in their lives to how they believe that thing should be different and when they do not see that black and white change, they give up. Goals are like the little engine that could (ugh, so cheesy); they cause us to continue on a lifelong journey for change and acceptance of our own flaws. Resolutions are an agreement with ourselves that there is something wrong with us, our lives, our happiness, and we need to change that thing by 2019 or the world will burn. Ya see the difference there? Don't set yourself up for failure; focus on goals not resolutions.
Ok, so steps please...
1. The goal must be specific but also a challenge
If goals were easy, everyone would be living their best lives floating on clouds. That's not realistic. If we want to see change something needs to change. Change is scary and challenging. Key word, challenge. We want something that is going to get us a bit out of our current comfort zone. Don't create a goal of making 6 billion dollars in 2019 (unless you're DJ Khaled) but also don't create a goal to get up each morning because, uhhh, we all do that. Find a balance and pay attention to how realistic your goal so as not to set yourself up for failure and giving up.
2. Don't be a negative Nancy.
Like any normal human, we all respond more to positive reinforcement rather than negative reinforcement. When you are creating goals for yourself, don't focus so much on all that may seemingly be going wrong in your life (resolutions) but rather what you would like to do instead. For example, I want to pile some cash in my savings this year. So instead of creating a goal that says I will stop spending money on materialistic things, I could state it as I will spend more time on activities that are free and fun. If I am not spending money on things, I will replace it with a positive experience. Positive vs. negative.
3. Make it tangible.
Making goals is an awesome first step to a better, happier life. But just speaking it into existence and the universe is not enough. Create and craft your goals in to something you can see or read each day. Vision boards are all over the internet; very few people out there are oblivious to them. Not everyone is the crafty type so maybe vision boards aren't your thing but at the very least, write your goals out. Create a journal for yourself where you write your goals and talk about how they are coming. If you speak your goals in to existence as well as create a way to be reminded of them each day, the more likely you are to continue pursuing them, even in the middle of the year.
4. Share your dreams.
I LOVE sharing my thoughts, plans, and dreams with those closest to me. Again, the more you talk about your goals, the less likely you will be to start to slip and give up all together. Talk about what sets your soul on fire and what you hope for your life regularly with someone you love and trust. Those supports are so important to achieving all of your dreams and the more you talk about it, the more it becomes reality.
5. Go easy on yourself.
At the end of the day, goals are meant to be a positive, exciting, and help you grow as a person. No one has to be in a rush to lose 80 lbs. by April and make $500,000 this year. Do what you know is realistic. Challenge yourself more than your current habits allow. Change is possible, and goals are the gateway to making a life you dream of. Each one of us deserves happiness in this world, are you chasing yours?
xoxo Miranda from the Midwest