New Year Resolutions
HAPPY NEW YEAR! It’s the start of the year and it feels like we all have a clean slate so what better time to set some achievable goals and see them through.
“My new year’s resolution is to get in shape and be healthy!”
Sound familiar? New year’s resolutions are a common cliché (just like articles and advice on new year’s resolutions) :) in the health and fitness world and at the start of each year there’s always massive increase of visitors to the gym, everyone wants to get in shape. However, as the year goes on a lot of them stop coming and I’d say that about less than 30% actually see their goals through to completion. So therein lies the dilemma; how do we push through to the end of our goals and which do you want to be; one of the hardcore few who reach their goal or one of the masses who caves half way through?
Setting a goal is exciting, the idea of reaching a level you never thought possible or had been wishing for is certainly exhilarating. Once you take that first step onto the path of your goal you feel energized and full of life – great! However, as time goes on – maybe a couple of months – you may be thinking it’s actually taking forever to reach that goal and you can start to feel a little disheartened. Honestly it’s an easy trap to fall into. When you’ve pretty much turned your world upside down by making the necessary lifestyle changes to reach your goal (which can often be completely different to what you’re used too) it’s natural to be a little bugged. It feels like you’ve done so much already and that your goals should just fall into your lap. It is at this point that many people give up and miss out on reaching their goal.
It is also at this point where you’re going to be tested to see if you really have substance and if you want your goal or not.
What inspires someone to reach their goals will vary from person to person. So it’s definitely difficult for myself or anyone to give advice that may work exactly for you. So instead here’s a look at a few experiences I’ve had that may help you push over that hump.
While writing this I have been thinking about the various new year’s resolutions I have had the past couple of years; 2009 was no sugar (including products that have added sugar) or junk food for the year, 2010 was not buying DVDs or video games (I felt like I was wasting money on and almost stockpiling DVD movies and Playstation games); and 2011 was finishing a 100 Man Kumite as well as no sugar again. I finished all of my little resolutions but there were definitely points when it felt draining – in 2009 seeing someone enjoy an awesome homemade cake for dessert would make my mouth water, 2010 I would be bugged when an awesome new game would be released and 2011 sucked when I was tired out of brains and still had to train hard for my event.
There’s no trick or secret I can tell you that makes you goals happen. At the end of the day if you really want your goal you’ll do whatever it takes to get it – that’s just how it works, plain and simple. But still here are a few little pointers I found worked for me during the tougher times of achieving the above goals.
1. Tell a bunch of people close to you what you are doing. I find this one is always helpful for me, when I tell people what I am doing, they’ll ask questions and keep the goal in the forward part of my mind. I find it’s also a good way for others to keep me accountable and on track.
2. Avoid people who are negative about your goal. People who are going to be difficult, not understanding or negative about your goal will certainly be a detriment. Unless your goal is to rob a bank these kinds of people will only drag you into their own rut and decrease the likeliness of you reaching your goal. Stick with those who are supportive and encouraging (again unless your goal is to rob a bank) :)
3. Don’t mistake not understanding for a lack of support. Your friends and family will likely be supportive but may not be as passionate, appreciative of or involved in your goal as you are. This is not a bad thing – we simply all have different perceptions of things, the truth is that no one is going to be as passionate about your goal as you are. So don’t freak out and mistake this for a lack of support.
4. Endure! Anyone can say they are going to do this or do that – and we know that everyone does – but not just anyone will endure the rough patches to see their goal come to fruition. Simply enduring those tough times is a key point in itself, it’s the point where you’ll learn the most valuable lessons and show that you truly have substance.
5. Knuckle down and get it done. Now you’ve told everyone what you’re doing, avoided negative people, happy with everyone’s support and are ready to endure it’s time to actually get the job done. Now get to it!
Note: if you have any experiences or ideas that work for you then we’d love to see them in the comments below (SIGN IN to leave comments).
At the end of the day there, again, really is no quick fix (sucks – I know) :) Reaching a goal is something special and worthwhile and the special and worthwhile things in life are going to be tough to obtain. If they weren’t then we’d all have what we wanted. There is no hidden secret or magic book that will help you reach your goals (fitness related or otherwise) it all simply boils down to hard work and commitment.