Hallmark Hotels Guide to Keeping Your Resolutions
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From Dry January to that new gym membership, as the first month of the year unfolds we all have the best possible intentions for making the next 52 weeks our healthiest, happiest, most successful and utterly unforgettable yet.
Sadly, though, there’s one slight problem. We are, after all, only human, and as such there’s not a single one of us that isn’t liable to temptation, or just a few steps from falling headfirst off the wagon and into a vat of chocolate, cheese, red meat and booze.
Put simply, it’s very easy to come up with New Year Resolutions that sound like great ideas. In contrast, sticking to those promises is a very different ball game. It requires resilience, self-discipline, and a desire to achieve these things for ourselves, not simply as a means to project a better self-image to the world. A good example is knocking smoking on the head- there isn’t a single nicotine-lover that doesn’t know of the dangers, but only when they decide to stub the final fag out for themselves is there any hope of retaining that lifestyle.
So how do you achieve what can feel like the impossible, and make sure your resolutions don’t fall by the wayside the moment someone says ‘Anyone up for the pub’? Here at Hallmark Hotels we’ve been thinking long and hard on this since making our own list of 10 resolutions , and after much deliberation finally came up with the following list of 5 sure fire ways not to let everything fall apart at the first (or indeed fourth) hurdle. Best be taking notes then.
Hallmark Hotels Guide To Keeping New Year Resolutions
1. Be realistic
It’s all well and good to intend on giving X-percentage of your monthly salary to worthwhile causes, earmark three evenings a week for a workout, and promise to perfect the piano, but are these ideas feasible? In short, make sure your resolutions are doable.
2. Write them down (everywhere)
Lists get lost, it’s as simple as that. Thankfully, we don’t spend all our time at work, either. As such we recommend writing down your resolutions not once, but a few times, and keeping copies in different devices and places to serve as a constant reminder, no matter where you are.
3. Make them public
What’s worse than letting yourself down? How about letting your friends and family down? By telling others about your good intentions there’s less chance they will be forgotten, and more chance of receiving (at best) disapproving looks if you falter.
4. Buddy up
This is a particularly good idea when it comes to resolutions like hitting the gym or giving up a bad habit. Find another person who has the same intention, and use each other as a crutch when things begin to look like they might go wrong.
5. Ignore the temptation to punish yourself
Maybe your friend had a significant birthday party during a month that was supposed to be gluttony-free. Perhaps there was a great deal on a holiday that required another credit card transaction, even though you promised never again to spend what you don’t have. Those morning runs might have been disrupted by torrential sleet. Whatever the reason you strayed from the path, don’t get hung up on it, and definitely don’t let that stop you from continuing with the best possible intentions. This, above all others, is the most important on our list to remember- slipping is not quitting.
6. Choose carefully You might have probably listed over 100 resolutions that you intend to achieve before the new year is over. It is advisable to choose those ones that will have the most impact on your life such as fulfilment, health and happiness. For example, if you quit smoking, you health will obviously improve. Furthermore, it will boost your esteem, feel proud about yourself, and add to your overall happiness. 7. Plan a time frame A time frame is very important for motivation and keeping you on track. It is your measure for success. It is the best way to assess your progress in the short term towards the long term ultimate goal. A calendar or diary will help you remain planned throughout the week or month. Create evaluation points along the way so that you can be able to measure progress and identify bottlenecks. 8. Treat yourself When laying down your plans and resolutions, there should be a way to reward or treat or yourself. This is very important when you achieve certain milestones. However do not endanger your goals. It is very easy for someone on a diet to say that they have been very good and then treat themselves to some candy bars. Keep you goals in mind. 9. Create manageable portions Break your resolutions for the new year into manageable goals. This is one of the best ways to guarantee success. The more time you put into planning at the moment, the higher the chances of attaining them in the future when you get there. Planning process involves building up all that willpower, which you will need to fall back to during the journey. Set clear goals such as saving a certain amount of money per month, or losing 5 pounds of weight or a weekly jog. Plan out how you intend to make that happen and stick to that. 10. Take charge The success or failure of your goals is entirely dependent on you. As much as your friends or family might be there to help or advise you along the way, you need to show initiative first. Your actions are the ones to set the kind of results that you wish to achieve. If you want to stick to your plans, then you must have a very strong control over your life. 11. Be patient According to life coaches, it takes a minimum of 21 days to form a habit from a new habit. For the habit to become part of your personality, then you require six months doing it. It is clear that it is not going to happen overnight. If you are trying to lose or gain weight, definitely results will not show in one week. You need to remain persistent and follow your goals in the right way and definitely results will show for themselves. Sometimes you might run out of motivation somewhere along the way, but you should not despair. Start all over again and the momentum will be rebuilt. Before long, you will be surprised to see your patience and persistence has eventually paid off. [caption id="attachment_6834" align="alignright" width="200"] Hallmark - Hull[/caption] 12. Align yourself Your resolutions should align with your values. If you make resolutions that do not conform with your values, then you are headed for failure. For example training for marathons that take away quality time that you should be spending with your family. Reevaluate your resolutions regularly and stick to the resolutions that conform more to your overall objectives. 13. Focus on positive goals It is not easy to make behavioural systematic change. This is due to the fact that there are negative habits that always seem to derail us when trying to achieve our set goals. We have also created an environment and people that support our negative behaviour. The first thing is to focus on the positives rather than the negatives. A negative goal is a habit that you intend to stop. A positive goal is something that you want to start doing. Habits are memories of actions that happen in certain situations. If you only spend your time and energy focusing only on stopping behaviours then it becomes hard to learn a new habit. According to Art Markman, who is a psychology professor, focus on doing something positive to occupy the time whenever you get the urge of engaging in negative behaviour. You will learn a new habit, and stop doing the old habit without even realising it. 14. Change your environment If you want to achieve some new year resolutions, then you need to change your environment as well. Human beings tend to do activities that are easy. If you want to achieve behaviour change, and attain something positive make it easy. Your negative spending behaviour might also be fuelled by the type of people you hang out with. In such circumstances, you will need to change your group of friends. Sometimes it is hard but it is for your own benefit. Conclusion Real behaviour change is not easy. There are sometimes along the way when you will fail and other days you will succeed. Be kind to yourself. When you fail on a certain day, take that as a chance to learn how to do in future and not a reason to throw in the towel. You can succeed in your new year resolutions if you learn to plan ahead.
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