Hi, I’m Dre. I am your mindset coach and mentor of change. Today we are going to discuss three ways to make sure you finish what you start as you begin working on your New Year’s Resolution.
Everyone is excited about the New Year and optimistic about their ability to accomplish their goals.
New year, new you?
Did you know that 60% of the population makes a resolution each year, but less than 10% keep their resolution? To ensure that you are a part of those who accomplish their goals, you need to have the proper plan in place.
Instead of planning, most people jump right into accomplishing their goal. They are excited about changing their life and believe they have the willpower and discipline to keep them on track.
The problem with willpower is it is an exhaustible resource. That is why 60% of the people who make a New Year’s Resolution will quit their resolution within 6 weeks.
If you want to finish what you start and permanently change your life, then follow these three techniques.
- Be honest with yourself
- Sleep on it
- Follow your core values
1. Be honest with yourself
It is important for you to be honest with yourself. Let’s just go ahead and put all the cards on the table. No more sugarcoating and telling yourself what is socially acceptable.
If you want to lose weight, be honest about the reason. You do not need to say it is because you want to be healthy if that is not your reason why. You do not even have to say it is because you want to spend more time with your kids if that is not the real reason.
Own the fact that you do not want to see high school friends unless you can fit into those skinny jeans. Just be as genuine, honest, and vulnerable with yourself about why want to do something.
When you are not being honest with yourself, you are dealing with the fear of inadequacy, acceptance, and failure.
By being honest and making yourself vulnerable. You allow yourself to focus on why you want to change your life. When you are not sure the reason that you are doing something, it makes it difficult for you continue when things get rough.
Challenges are a part of changing your life. Understanding your beliefs is going to help you get from where you are to where you want to be. Your beliefs create your actions and your actions create your life.
I found an interesting study that discusses ways you can increase the chance you solidifying any change you want to make in your life by 300%.
The technique is called the if-then plan and it is very simple for you start using today. It only takes a small amount of preparation ahead of time.
Let’s say you wanted to stop eating unhealthy food on your lunch-break. However, every time you go out to lunch with your coworkers, you feel pressured into ordering something that you no longer want to eat.
Next time you go to lunch with your coworkers, you are going to tell yourself; “if I go to lunch with my co workers, then I will order a salad.”
I know it sounds simple, but you will be surprised how effective simple can be. By using this simple technique, you can prepare your mind ahead of time for how it will react. When you have a plan in place, it allows you to follow the plan on autopilot.
Think about how much you spend when you have a shopping list versus when you shop without one. Even though the shopping list is very simple and does not hinder you from purchasing more, you routinely spend less when you have one.
Conserve your mental energy
The reason these techniques work so well is because you are not using your mental energy to make decisions. Anything that requires you to make a choice requires you to use your mental energy. Since your mental energy is an exhaustible resource, it will run out with the more choices you make.
If you have ever studied an entire day for a test, then, you know at some point, you cannot even figure out one plus one.
It is no different than if you set a goal to become a more considerate person and you find yourself easily irritated by the end of the day. This is also why many executives do not schedule meetings at the end of the day. Any decision you make requires you to exert mental energy.
As a result, the more things you can automate in your life, the more mental energy you can save for those unexpected situations.
2. Sleep on it
I know what you are thinking. You are thinking, “Dre, I have been ready to change my life and today is the day.” Even though this may be the case, it is important that you sleep on your decision after you have a realistic understanding.
By allowing yourself to absorb what it takes to change your life, you will know if you dedicated to the cause.
Keep in mind that you did not get where you are at overnight so you are not going to transform your life back overnight either.
Be fair to and give yourself the proper amount of time. I know everyone is not interested in being healthy, but it is one of the most visual transformations you can make in your life.
I know everyone does not want to lose weight, but it often use it in my illustrations because it is a visual change that is easy to digest.
Set yourself up for success
If you gained 100 pounds and set a goal to lose 100 pounds, how much time should you give yourself? If you think you should lose 100 pounds in three-months, you are setting yourself up for failure.
Losing a pound a week is average, and while three-months may seem like a long time, you would have to lose eight pounds a week.
As you begin to eat healthier and exercise more, you quickly realize you are not going to accomplish your 100 pound weight loss goal. The fear of failure will cause you to procrastinate and eventually quit your goal.
Even if you lost four pounds in the first month, you quit because your goal required you to lose 33-pounds in the first month.
I want you to sleep on your goal because I want you to be patient with yourself. You have done the research, you understand what is reasonable, and you are going to show yourself you can be patient.
If you cannot give yourself one night to sleep on your goal, it is unlikely that you are going to make it past the 6-week average.
3. Follow your core values
What are your core values? I find people misinterpret their core values from time to time. Think of your core values as adjectives of how you would describe yourself.
You could describe yourself as a creative person. This would help you to know your goals should allow you to express your creativity.
I am someone who believes in compassion. Therefore, I know everything I do should have an element of compassion involved.
You could be a person who likes stability, unity, and working with others. All of these are examples of your core values and whenever you set a goal in-line with your core values, you increase your chances of success.
If you find yourself compromising your core values and chasing money, you will face more challenges than if you stayed true to yourself.
If someone enjoys stability and does not like rejection, then they will find a commission only sales job very difficult. Even though the sales job pays a substantial amount of money, it is not going to help you deal with the stress associated with compromising your values.
Treat yourself right
If spending time with your family is your core value, then do not take a promotion that requires you to travel every other week.
If family is your priority, it also does not make sense to take a promotion that requires you to work 80-hours a week. You are going to regret every baseball game, ballet recital, and birthday party you miss.
Do not be surprised when making decisions contrary to your core values cause you to feel all sorts of negative emotions about life.
When you are willing to compromise your core values, you are struggling with the fear of uncertainty and the fear of the worst-case scenario.
The fear of the worst-case scenario would have you believe that on-one is going to be interested in anything you are passionate about. As a result, you need to take the safe route and work in a career that does not utilize your abilities.
I do not need to tell you what it feels like to spend every day doing something you are not passionate about. We have all been there at least once in our lives. It feels like a prison sentence and that never ends and it can lead to depression, bitterness, and resentment.
Authenticity is key
People are making a living doing something that they enjoy. I remember watching this TV show on CNBC about entrepreneurs called, The Big Idea with Donny Deutsch.
The show aired from 2004-2008 and I remember this girl being interviewed who could not have been more than 10 years old. She was talking about how whenever she went to the movie theater, her parents purchased her popcorn. The problem was all the butter was on the top of her popcorn and none was on the bottom.
She ended up creating an attachment that would evenly distribute the butter on all her popcorn. It was essentially a straw with wholes poked throughout. As the butter poured through the straw, it would flow out the holes and flavor the entire container.
I believe she ended up having her product patented and it was placed in several movie theater chains.
That 10-year old girl followed something she was passionate about and she found out other people were just as passionate. I am sure she could have found several people who would have told her it was a bad idea. But you know what, they would have been wrong.
I encourage you to follow goals that are aligned with your core values so you can have that extra oomph to get across the finish line. Because again, you are going to face challenges, but understand these challenges are opportunities.
Do it for you
When you are following something you are not passionate about, you are going to quit at the first sign of opposite.
I remember when I was dating someone in college and she was loved this one fraternity. I applied to join that fraternity because I was indifferent about Greek life, but if she liked it, I loved it.
Well, they pushed back on my application. They told me because I was a junior and most students pledge as freshmen, that I did not have a good chance of getting in.
Since I was not truly interested in joining the fraternity, I took that as a sign it was not going to happen. It took me some time, but I later realized it may have been nothing more than a test a see if I was truly interested.
And you what? The test proved I was not truly interested.
My interest in the fraternity was based solely on my interest in appeasing my girlfriend. While she was passionate about joining the fraternity, who was very passionate about the fraternity.
I say this to say, if you want to finish what you start, you need to make sure it is something you are passionate about.
You have an opportunity to change your life for the better. I want you to be within the less than 10% of people who successfully change their life. Be honest, patient, and true to yourself if you want to successfully accomplish your goals and transform your life.
Until then. Continued blessings on your journey to become the champion of your dream life.
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