How to Actually Keep Your Resolution

Every time it gets closer and closer to January 1, we have this compelling desire to create a list of New Year resolutions. We have all of these things that we’d like to change and we swear that we are going to change them. And in most cases we do – for about a few weeks. Then it’s downhill from there. Next thing you know, January 1 is approaching again and you’re making the same resolution – and it becomes a cycle of just setting yourself up for failure.

Let it be known that there is sincere desire to make these changes for ourselves. It’s just so hard. I’ll admit, when I used to make resolutions, I would try so hard to keep them and a few months later, I would just forget about it. Sometimes, we try hard to get right into making a change that we go into it without a plan or at least some course of action that will get you the results you want for a long time.

A lot of you guys come to me because you aren’t looking just to meet and attract women. You all are looking for a long-term relationship. Some of you are looking for a girlfriend. Some of you are looking for a wife. Clearly you understand that with achieving that, you are going to need a course of action. Resolutions take the same principle. You are going to need a plan and set some short-term goals to make your resolution a piece of cake.

Later on in the week, I will give you several resolutions that will change your 2009 for the better. But for now, here’s how you plan these resolutions.

Be specific.
Don’t be vague with the goal you are trying to set. In order to be able to view this goal being accomplished, you have to view it as specifically as possible. Here’s an extreme example. Let’s say your resolution is to start going to the gym. Yeah, that’s great but that could mean you could go tomorrow once and that’s it – I know most of you wouldn’t actually do that, but still. You have to push it as far as you can. Let your goal be, “I’m going to go to the gym 4 times a week and have a specific workout routine for each day. While I’m there, I’m going to lose fat, gain muscle and be in the best shape of my life. I’ll be lifting weights some of the time and doing cardio in the form of running or playing basketball. I will look like the effing man!” Yes, maybe a bit extreme but definitely possible to visualize and when you can visualize yourself accomplishing something, you are already halfway there to making it happen.

Set a form of accountability. Have a friend hold you accountable for your resolution. Make sure he or she is a hard ass about it too. Having another person encourage you or join you in the resolution will ease the pressure and make it easier to keeping your resolution. You are never alone.

Set short-term goals. The easiest way to follow-through with your resolutions is to set smaller milestones in order to ease the path to accomplishing your goal. With a design background, I’ll use this example. Clients rely on setting these milestones to make sure that they are getting what they ordered on time and exactly how they wanted it. You need to rely on these milestones too. So with the gym thing, set some smaller goals for yourself. Maybe you want to increase your bench press weight every so often, decrease your body fat, lose a couple of pounds, whatever. Setting shorter goals will eventually lead you to keeping your resolution.

Reward yourself. When doing a design project, if you complete a milestone, you get paid a portion of the total. Simple enough. Reward yourself when you accomplish those smaller goals toward your resolution. Just make sure that the reward doesn’t counter your progress. So if you are trying to lose 20 pounds and you lost 5 so far, don’t reward yourself by going to an Old Country Buffet and cleaning house. Do something more fun. Maybe buy yourself a video game or a cool toy (Best Buy), or if you are a woman, buy yourself a nice dress or treat yourself to a day at the spa. If you keep doing this, let the rewards get better and serve as a motivator as you get closer to keeping your resolution.

Who knows, maybe for actually following through with your resolution, you’ll treat yourself to a Caribbean vacation cruise! You can thank me by bringing me with you.

What are some other ways that can help keep your resolution? What do you do?

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