Every year, over 100 million Americans make a New Year’s Resolution; only 18% of those people will actually keep it. If less than 1/5th of the people that make a resolution actually keep them, why even bother coming up with a new goal to start working on the first of year? We’ll get to that, but first…
Why New Year’s Resolutions Suck
New Year’s Resolutions have a number of things working against them, but it comes down to three main reasons of Suck.
Reason of Suck #1 – Procrastination
The big problem with New Year’s Resolutions is that we wait until the “magical” date of the first of the year to start them. You might think in October, “you know, I should start exercising,” but then think, “oh, well I’ll just wait till the New Year and start off fresh.”
This is just a way of procrastinating. Why not start working on the new goal when you first start thinking about it? January 1st is just another day on the calendar, yet we wait for it to come to do things we could start doing today.
Reason of Suck #2 – Lack of Preparation
The second reason New Year’s Resolutions suck is that we push off even starting on our resolution till the first of the year. The problem is that if you want to actually succeed at your goal, you’ll need to do some planning. Research tips on your new goal, read about success stories of other people, find like-minded people that can keep you committed.
Waiting until the day you want to make a change to even create a plan on how to make the change is what lands you in the 82% of people who don’t make it.
Reason of Suck #3 – Intimidation/De-motivation
The final reason New Year’s Resolutions suck is that they are too intimidating. Generally, when we set a goal at the beginning of the year, it’s for the entire year. We assume that we can go from behaving one way (such as smoking) on one day, to then behaving another way (not smoking) the next. And we think we will behave the new way forever.
Thinking about making a change for the rest of your life is intimidating; it’s daunting and scary. Plus when we mess up, it becomes de-motivating (“I’ll never learn to eat the right number of fruits and vegetables every day.”) Instead, think in smaller chunks. First try to work on your resolution for just a week, or 30 days. Then link those weeks together and you’ll eventually get to that full year with the new behavior.
Why You Should Make Them Anyway
So if New Year’s Resolutions suck, why even make them? Because they’re better than nothing. They’re better than sitting around and accepting the status quo. If the change of the new year is what motivates you to do something, then take advantage of it and do it.
Because even if you don’t succeed at never hitting snooze again in your life, you’ll do better than if you never set the goal to begin with. And that’s why you make a New Year’s Resolution.
How to Improve Your Chances of Success
So now that you know some of the pitfalls of New Year’s Resolutions, but why you should make them anyway, you may want to get some help so you can be one of the successful ones. For some articles with helpful tips, check out: