The start of a new year serves up an opportunity to reset your goals and refocus your life. The catch-phrase “new year new you” has been around for a long time and is frequently used in marketing campaigns as January approaches. The question, though, is whether this is just marketing hype or something that is actually achievable. We’re all too familiar with making ambitious New Year’s resolutions that we have already failed at before January is over.
What Is a New Year’s Resolution?
A New Year’s resolution plays a big role in the psychology of the “new year new you” ideal. Shortly before the beginning of a new year, people make all kinds of bold resolutions to change some aspect(s) of their lives that they’re unhappy with. It may be that the changing of the number of the year acts as a kind of motivation to remind us that time is ticking away.
New Year’s resolutions can encompass a wide range of things, including increasing the amount of exercise we take, adopting healthier eating habits, managing finances better, and taking a different approach to work. At the heart of all of these are the goals that we set ourselves.
In order to change your life and make the “new year new you” ideal a reality, you have to set goals. These goals are the end result that you are striving to achieve and are generally what will help motivate you to keep pressing onwards.
The Importance of Making Your Goals “Doable”
However, one of the biggest reasons why people give up on their New Year’s resolutions so quickly is because they make resolutions that are unrealistic. In order to succeed with any change that we want to make in our lives, we have to make our goals achievable.
For example, if, as part of a “new year new you” goal, someone wanted to increase their amount of daily exercise, it would be unrealistic to expect to begin with running ten miles a day. A more “doable” goal would be to run for 30 minutes (or less, depending on their existing fitness level) at least three times a week and gradually build up the time and frequency.
It’s also important that we do not try to make too many changes at once. The more resolutions that we make each year, the greater the likelihood of failure. The amount of willpower that we have to stick to our goals and resolutions is limited.
Are New Year’s Resolutions Necessary?
Making resolutions at the start of the year are not strictly necessary. However, making changes to your lifestyle that benefit your wellbeing comes highly recommended by many professionals.
What Happens If I Fail?
Statistics suggest that at least 30% of people who make New Year’s resolutions will have failed or given up within two weeks. Failure when it comes to resolutions is common. However, since people tend to give up on their resolutions the first time they have “slipped up”, it may be better to redefine failure.
Slipping up in your resolution is not a failure. Human beings are not infallible. What is more, neither slip-ups nor failures mean that you cannot wipe the slate clean and start over.
7 Steps to Becoming a New You
Whatever the motivation for wanting to embrace the “new year new you” when January 1st arrives, here are 7 steps you can take to help you become a new you.
Set Daily Goals
Rather than having just an overarching resolution that you aim for, try breaking it down. Daily goals do not have to be complicated. In fact, the simpler the better. Setting – and keeping – daily goals enables you to feel in control of your life in general, making sticking to bigger goals more achievable.
Discuss Your Plan With Others
Ultimately, discussing your plan with friends or family members makes you more accountable. This can make a big difference when it comes to maintaining your resolutions. If you have a “new year new you” goal that no one knows about, no one will know if you fail. Tell someone, and you have a greater likelihood of sticking with the goal long term.
Get Better Quality Sleep
Sleep has a big impact on our ability to make positive changes in our lives. Sleep deprivation makes people tired and grouchy – and generally leads to poorer decision making. Focusing on getting better quality sleep, therefore, has multiple benefits. For example, getting quality sleep reduces the likelihood of craving sugary drinks or food. It also increases our energy levels and makes exercising easier.
Make Your Diet Healthier
Adopting a healthier diet can be an excellent means of transforming yourself as part of a bigger “new year new you” strategy. Choosing fresh fruits and vegetables and healthier cuts of meat can be beneficial in a whole host of ways. For example, if weight loss is the ultimate goal, then a healthy diet can increase the amount of weight lost compared with exercising. A healthy diet also contributes to better stress management.
Get Some Exercise
Increasing the amount of exercise you take can boost your mood and your motivation when it comes to maintaining your goals. There are significant health benefits to be reaped, too – including reduced cardiovascular risk and much more.
Practice Relaxation Techniques
Relaxation techniques make a big difference to our ability to cope with stress, work, and other pressures. Most of us do not realize that our breathing is much shallower than it should be. Therefore, deep belly breathing is a simple relaxation technique that can be done anywhere, at any time.
Take Time To Do The Things You Like
Doing things that you enjoy can sometimes seem like an indulgence when your life is packed with multiple demands on your time. However, even just a short period of “me-time” can help you to refocus and de-stress.
New Year New You – Over To You
Focusing on a “new year new you” goal can be hugely rewarding, and beneficial for your well-being. Remember to make your goals achievable and to stop seeing slip-ups as failures. Good luck!