It always seems impossible until its done.
– Nelson Mandela
The New Year is all about new beginnings! And with new beginnings come the New Year Resolutions. I am sure you must have also picked a few new year resolutions this year. Have you given up on it yet? A study conducted by researchers at the University of Scranton found that 23% of people quit their resolution just after a week. The study went on to confirm that only 19% of the individuals can sustain their resolutions for long-term.
Anybody who has picked a resolution knows the fact that it is very tough to sustain it, however good your intention may be for the same. Some therapists believe that people fall into the same trap year on year, making the same mistakes and then giving up easily. It has more or less become a fad. But what if someone tells you that there is actually a formula wherein you can succeed in your resolutions? Surprised?
Let us look at this in detail. Why do we really take resolutions? To make AMENDS to our life and lifestyle. Correct? Now why do you think the word “AMENDS” is written in capitals? Because the answer lies within. Here is what each alphabet of the word means:
A = Accountable
Achieving our goals is our responsibility. If your resolution is to loose weight or quit smoking or gain weight, nobody else is going to do that for you. And so, you need to hold yourself accountable, if you are not moving towards the goal. The best way to do this is working with a coach, trainer or an accountability partner. These people can help you gradually push your limits and improve your ability to move towards that resolution. Be careful in choosing that partner, as a demotivated partner can pull you down. In my personal experience, I have realised that being a part of a fitness group also really helps.
M = Methodical
Any objective or goal, requires some meticuluous planning. It is necessary to invest some time into creating a plan on paper, on how you want to complete the resolution. Break the resolution into smaller steps. Like, if your resolution is to reduce 10 kgs of weight in a year, you can divide it into diet, workout and weight loss. You can plan a weekly diet and treat yourself in the short term if you achieve this. Workout plans can be as small as 15 mins and slowly and gradually increase to 1 hour by the end of the year. Weight loss of 10 kg can be overwhelming, so target loosing 1 kg in 1 month. This is just an example, and each person will need to have a different plan based on their needs and requirement.
E = Explicit
People tend to take resolutions on the go and not really put any thought to it. When you do decide on a resolution, it is necessary to ask yourself that question. Why are you taking it? What motivates you to achieve it? How do you want to achieve it? By When do you want to achieve it? This brings in clarity of thought. If you are convinced that the resolution is really going to bring in a change in your life and your lifestyle, you will definitely work towards it. The chances of leaving it half way are very meagre.
N = No Self-Doubt
Failures are the stepping stone to success. Every human being fails. But the real crux is how you get up and get going again. How you can convert these failures into successes. It is necessary to not let past failures dictate terms. Failures are to be learnt from and not sulk over. So make corrections to your path so that you dont fail again. The greatest way to defeat self-doubt is celebrating the tiniest of the victories. In my journey I used social media for this. My first 5k, first 10k, LSD, first gym workout, gym workout progression, etc; I keep sharing it on my Instagram and Facebook accounts. The likes and comments keep motivating me, which inturn improves my confidence and kills any self-doubt. Minor setbacks are bound to happen. The best way forward is to ignore them and keep your eyes on the larger goal.
D = Dreamscape
A resolution is mainly about what you would like to do, rather than what you “should do”. Setting very tough or unachieveable objectives can be a major turnoff as you are not able to achieve the same. Similarly, an easy resolution, can only create boredom. So, it is important that the goals are realistic. Tough but achievable! Any resolution that you take, is bound to bring some change in your lifestyle, your behaviour. So, it is important to make it more reasonable.
S = Scrutinize
Understanding how you are performing towards the larger goal is very important. Measuring your performance weekly, fortnightly, monthly; and analysing it really helps. A periodic review of the parameters can actually create some sort of a benchmark for your to improve upon. In my case, I use a wall calendar to track daily activities, an activity chart to monitor monthly mileages, a fitness watch to measure activities, a weighing scale and measurement tapes to keep track of the vitals. For almost 4 odd years I have been maintaining this data. I have also tried to document the reasons for a sudden weight loss or a weight gain or a change in performance. This kind of helps me create a data. And data can always be scrutinized to get better results. Most hurdles are based on assumptions, inferences, judgements, overthinking, and previous reference points. A proper record of accomplishments can improve the path of consistency.
It is important to think right, work hard and focus on your goal. To achieve any goal, you need to create some sort of an image of the end goal in your mind. If it is your fitness journey, think of an image of a fitter you. Imagine how the society would react to this change. Visualize the positives and keep moving on. Remember one thing for sure all progress takes place outside the comfort zone. Winners are loosers who got up and gave it one more try! Dont shy away from making AMENDS.
Stay Safe! Stay Healthy!