In order to fulfill these resolutions, we need to give ourselves space to enjoy life, relax, and rest in between our work and our endeavors.
As the New Year approaches, millions of people with renewed enthusiasm and dreams take the opportunity to start over. People hope to work on self-improvement and set ambitious goals, but by the end of February, all plans and resolutions are gone. It’s the same story every year.
Many studies claim that only 12 percent feel victory and the majority fail to keep their resolve before the end of February. Khaleej Times spoke to a psychologist to find out why New Year’s resolutions fail and how to overcome this failure.
Psychologists say that the main focus when deciding on a resolution should be sustainable and organic for you and your world. “The best resolution is the one that is realistically achievable,” says Dr Clarice Mendonca (PsyD), clinical neuropsychologist at the Brain Matters Centre.
“Many New Year’s resolutions fail because they are not sufficient, sustainable, efficient or specific enough, and we are carried away by the prospect of renewal that also forgets to consider the basic obstacles that exist in nature and our environment,” added Dr. Mendonca.
Reham Helal Abdelrahman Ali Ammar, clinical psychologist, NMC Royal Hospital – Khalifa City, Abu Dhabi, said that we should focus on our values when deciding on New Year’s resolutions and choose to fulfill our goals by taking steps towards them.
“New year’s resolutions fail because the goals are unrealistic, and we don’t track progress or know the steps to follow the goals. Time management is necessary, including social and family support,” said Ammar.
Many make health resolutions – to exercise more and become healthier. Psychologists say that these statements will be broad and can be transformed into more feasible solutions if they are broken down into specific and targeted goals. “We can’t implement these resolutions because they don’t fit our lifestyle or the situation. We decide to do something too big or different, or drastic. So, even if we decide to do something good for our well-being, it will always be a burden of work,” he said. Dr. Mendonca.
Specialists believe that those who succeed in achieving their New Year’s resolutions are those who use the cycle of planning, implementing, evaluating, and adapting. “I often find the highest success rate among those who use their mind and heart to make strategic decisions, those who rely on themselves and their environment for help and support, and those who are humble about their ambitions,” said Dr. Mendonca. .
To accomplish this resolution, psychologists believe that we need to give ourselves space to enjoy life, relax, and rest in between work and efforts.
Ammar said that one should track progress every three months or periodically and insisted on not making short-term goals. “Successful people are people who are patient, tenacious, enthusiastic and take advice from others. People who consider resolutions must determine why they want to succeed or the reasons for failure. Do not consider everything or nothing,”
Tips from a psychologist to successfully keep a resolution:
- Make the right decision – take a good, hard look at your life, how satisfied you are, what is good, what needs to be changed, what resources are available, and who you can rely on for support.
- Keep your thoughts about the resolution broad with specific steps to achieve it. For example: “I will nurture my physical and mental well-being,” which includes taking care of myself, setting a routine and surrounding myself with the right people.
- Try different options, even the first one seems absurd. This allows you to determine the most reasonable and sustainable alternatives and provides a backup plan if the chosen method does not work or becomes boring.
- Keep it simple.
- Be open to reassessing and adapting your strategy from time to time.
- Visual reminders can often help you stay focused on the goals you need to achieve (for example, setting a vision board)