In last week’s blog, we shared 3 tips that can help you stick to your New Year’s resolutions. We shared that to make a really strong resolution that you can actually follow, you must:
- Make it very specific
- Be able to identify what is motivating the resolution
- Have a vision in mind of what your life will look like when the resolution is followed
In order to achieve your resolutions, effort and dedication are required. In addition, changing your perspective on your resolution is an extremely useful tool that can strengthen and simplify your goals.
Is Your Resolution an Approach Goal or an Avoidance Goal?
The success of goals and resolutions has a lot to do with the type of mindset and perspective we have towards them. First, it’s important to identify if your resolution is an approach or avoidance goal.
An approach goal is something that you want to reach or maintain while an avoidance goal is something you want to eliminate, such as an unwanted behavior.
It has been proven that we are more likely to stick to an approach goal than an avoidance goal because it is proactive in nature. An approach goal is, in many ways, stronger than an avoidance goal because there are more opportunities to track and notice progress, than with an avoidance goal.
Changing Your Perspective
Many avoidance goals and New Year’s Resolutions have to do with losing something – eliminating something from our lives, or changing a part of who we are. Resolutions like, “I want to lose weight/ stop stressing/ stop smoking/ leave toxic relationships, etc.” all involve getting rid of something.
While losing a bad habit can have extremely positive results, focusing on the loss is a negative perspective and approach. A more effective way to approach a resolution like this is to change your perspective – rather than focusing on the loss, change the way you think of your goal by focusing on the positive – what you must do proactively to reach your goal.
- Instead of saying your resolution is to lose weight, focus on exercising and adopting a healthy diet routine.
- Instead of telling yourself to yell at the kids less, focus on staying patient and make your resolution “to follow my patience plan daily”
- Instead of saying you’re going to stop eating fast food, think about the new types of foods you will start eating to replace the fast food.
When you shift your focus from what you are losing to what you are gaining (a new exercise and diet routine, a new way to exercise patience, new foods, etc.) you will begin to think of your resolution in a positive, future-focused way that is often more exciting.
When you only think of what you will be losing, your motivation and commitment can rapidly decrease. Whereas, if you think about what you will be gaining as a result of achieving your goal, about the future and moving forward, you will find yourself motivated and committed way longer than a few weeks.
Looking at your resolution through a positive lens will create a much stronger plan for you to follow. When working towards your vision of what your life will look like once this goal is accomplished, you will feel empowered and energized by your resolution. Remember to focus on the positive benefits you will be gaining rather than the negative habits you will lose and most importantly, remember to be proud of the choice you’re making and the hard work you are putting in!
Sticking to your goals, being proud of yourself, and practicing gratitude is the perfect example of living #theboditudelifestyle!