Beating the Odds

212Access December 18, 2012 Comments Off on Beating the Odds

By: Jamie Silverstedt

Did you know you have a better chance of dying in a car accident in New York than successfully fulfilling your New Year’s resolution? (76 percent chance of dying in a car accident vs 88 percent chance of failing with your resolution).

Worse than that, 4 out of 5 resolutions are broken within the second week of the year. And by March, only 37 percent are still going strong with their resolutions. But there are things you can do to prepare your mind now for that looming January 1st resolution, according to professional life coaches.

Set Realistic Goals

Professional therapists say most people fail with their New Year’s resolutions because they don’t set realistic goals. You can’t learn Chinese in four months, so don’t set this as a goal. Likewise, you can’t lose 100 pounds in 30 days. If you want to succeed with your resolution, set goals that are feasible, and suit your personality and capabilities.

Make a Plan

Setting a goal without determining how to achieve it is just a wishful thinking. We need to write down how will resolve our resolution and define all the necessary steps for the success.

Have Patience

Resolutions require time and effort. We might set them in a day, but we need to know and remind ourselves that we can’t accomplish them overnight. Take your resolution one step at a time, and keep to a schedule to check on its progress. If you’re trying to lose weight, dieticians recommend you check your weight once a week, as opposed to daily. The time will allow you to better measure your progress.

Reward Yourself

Give yourself a reward after succeeding, even if it’s a small success. If you quit smoking, put aside the money that you would normally spend on cigarettes and buy yourself something special with that money. Likewise, if you lose weight in the first month, buy yourself a new outfit in your new size. Psychologists say this will reinforce your positive progress.

Reach out to Family and Friends for Support

Don’t be afraid to reach out to close family members and friends in times of weakness. Therapists say you should alert them to your goals and ask them if it’s okay to turn to them when you feel close to failing. The outside forces can be a motivating factor.

Don’t Make Decisions in the Heat of the Moment

Don’t create your resolution on New Year’s Eve or in the spur of the moment. You need to prepare your mind in advance, and that requires mental preparation. The more we think of our goals, the more we will be able to stick to them.

And if you are a part of the 12 percent who are still going strong with your resolution, congrats. Now tell us how you did it.