keeping new years resolutions

keeping new years resolutions (identify roadblocks and stay on the path)

On New Years Eve, many of us sit down and examine the year. Then we embark on the difficult task of setting New Years Resolutions. But that only leads to the even more difficult task of keeping New Years resolutions.

How hard is it to keep the goals we set for the New Year? How hard is it to actually make change? It’s so hard that 80% of resolutions fail by February.

But it’s not actually failure. It’s not like you resolved to write a book and you didn’t write at all. It’s more that you started, hit a wall, and gave up.

Today I want to talk about some barriers to stretching ourselves, some roadblocks we’re bound to hit in pursuit of keeping New Years resolutions. And I also want to share some techniques to climb over, under, through, or around those roadblocks and stay on the path.

But first, this YouTube video to get you inspired for the journey ahead!

keeping new years resolutions (identify roadblocks and keep yourself on the path)

1. mindset – examine it and edit it to support your resolutions

Firstly, what’s holding you back?

Last year I wrote something called Reclaim Creativity. It was a call to action  to examine what’s holding us back and reclaim our right to creativity. Obviously I wrote it out of my own need and shared it in case there is a greater need.

Which there is. Many of us have something holding us back from either believing in our creativity or acting on it. And you can apply that to other areas of your life too.

Mindset is something that many of us have heard a lot about. It’s being studied and researched because it’s powerful.

For example, that lady is super successful and she believes in herself 100%. What came first? The success or the mindset.

When it comes to our New Years resolutions, many of us have limiting beliefs around why we haven’t yet reached certain goals. Subsequently, if we head into the New Year with a resolution that we don’t believe we’re capable of or worthy of, I fear we’re doomed.

a helpful mindset

When we head into the New Year with certainty that we are capable and faith that we’ll figure it out along the way, then we’re in a much better position to deal with the challenges when they come.

And they will come.

Want to prove your limiting beliefs wrong? Practice one or two of the many mindset tips and tricks available to you and replace those limiting beliefs with powerful and positive ones.

2. fear – own it and make it your friend in achieving your goals

Did I mention the challenges will come?

Especially if we’re talking about creative goals, you’re going to have to face some fears. I don’t even thing this is exclusive to creative goals. Taking risks, sometimes scary risks, are vital if we actually want to change or create something new.

There’s a cycle. Think about the seasons and how everything is vibrant and green and alive in summer. Then fall comes and changes everything eventually giving way to winter which clears the way for spring.

The New Year is that clean slate that clears the way for whatever you’re going to create in your life or your art. But to get to that clean slate we have to go through a year of ups and downs. And then we look back at that year and try to learn from it.

New Chapters are exciting. Until they’re scary. Until the pressure seems to be too much and we’re not sure if we can go on.

dive in

That fear is a sign that you should. Dive into the darkness, head out on the adventure, climb the mountain, and bundle up for winter. If we repackage fear, it’s excitement and anticipation.

What if I fail? But what if I succeed?

Are you going to be the person who never tries because they might fail? That’s familiar and comfortable. But you could also be the person who keeps failing on the off chance that one of these times you succeed.

Courage is a wonderful trait to have especially when trying to keep New Years Resolutions.

3. commitment – have a good enough why so that your resolutions align with your mission

When it comes to courage, there are things that I’m afraid of that I have no intention of ever trying. There’s no point. I don’t like it and it just isn’t for me.

It’s when there is something you really want, a desire that’s deep within your bones, that you’ll be willing to stick to it.

Otherwise, why face your fears? Why risk discomfort? Why risk failure?

When you have given up on goals because you’ve discovered that the hard work, the pain, the fear, and all the risk was just not worth it, then you need a better why.

If you have a strong why, it would be worth it. It would be worth it to face your fears, dig into your past suffering, and flip your mindset. That strong why will help you stay committed.

4. support – where to find it

And sometimes your commitment starts to fail. Sometimes you fall back into old patterns of thinking or the fear gets to be too much. Your why will feel useless or impossible or unattainable.

This is when you need support.

You have a friend you can call to talk you back onto the path. You can rely on your faith and your spiritual practice to guide you and show you the way. Or maybe there’s a book, a quote, or a song that reminds you that it’s all worth it.

Identify what makes you feel supported and find it.

keeping new years resolutions

I’ll just note quickly here that it’s also a good idea to identify what doesn’t make you feel supported and release it. Cleanse yourself of bad habits whether that’s junk food, social media, or a certain person who really brings you down.

Being supportive is a good way to find support. Just like being forgiving is a good way to find forgiveness. If you don’t have anyone or anything to lean on at the moment, start there. Focus on gratitude and service, see what grows.

5. it’s a practice, a path, a journey

The last tidbit is key and it wraps the other four up in a nice little bow.

Your downfall might be a mindset trap that you are falling into such as the thought that achieving this goal will fix your problems. Or maybe your goal is some far off summit that is the source of your fear.

Are you setting your goals without a strong enough why or meaningful purpose? Or perhaps you think you can go it alone because it’s a short climb when in reality it’s a long journey and you’re going to need support.

false summits

When we set goals, often we see some summit looming off in the distance. I’ll be successful when I reach 10000 followers on Instagram or I’ll be happy when I can run 5 miles without dying. What if instead our goals were small destinations on a larger journey?

I had 10,000 followers on Instagram once and I know what you’re wondering. No, it did not mean I was successful nor did I find happiness. Yes, it made it possible for me to add links to my Instagram stories which was super helpful for when I was running a Kickstarter campaign for my kids book, but that’s about it.

Take the age old New Years resolution to work out more. People make that resolution because they feel like they should exercise more, want to lose weight, or there is some guilt around all the heavy holiday eating. People that keep that resolution are on a larger path to have an active lifestyle.

That’s why all the health and fitness experts emphasize finding some sort of exercise that you enjoy. Because you’ll do it if it benefits your overall life and picture of yourself.

create a picture, purpose, or mission

So what is your picture of yourself?
Who are you or who are you trying to be?You have some goal to paint 1000 pictures of dogs. Why? What greater purpose or mission does that lead you towards.

We already talked about all the obstacles we have to overcome if we want to keep our New Years resolutions. It’s going to be a lot easier to do so if they’re resolutions that mean something to us in the bigger picture of our life. Our resolutions ideally become habits that become a part of who we are.

If we make a one time resolution that is a quick fix solution, we’ll quit as soon as something better comes along. However, if we are taking one more step on a path towards the life we want then chances are we won’t give up when the blisters appear or the pack gets heavy.

keeping new years resolutions

For example, I want to find an agent for the next book I’m writing because it’s a step in the direction I’m trying to go and in alignment with my mission to use my creativity to inspire people.

What are your goals? And how are they steps on the path of your life? If you don’t have a mission or a purpose, maybe you can start there.

5 tips for keeping new years resolutions

In summary, here are 5 tips for keeping New Years resolutions.

1. Examine and edit your mindset and your limiting beliefs. If you want to accomplish your goals it would help if at least one person believed in you.

2. Fear will appear when you’re stretching yourself and trying to grow. Don’t run away, acknowledge fears role in your transformation.

3. If you want to stay committed to your resolutions it helps to have a strong why.

4. A little support goes a long way. Find some.

5. Don’t just race to the summit. Creativity is a path, a practice, a journey, and a destination. If your resolutions are in alignment with your mission they become one more step on your path.

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