We have all been here before. The end of year is approaching and we start appraising ourselves on what we have done well and what perhaps we have improved on. Then, we set ourselves some goal or resolution, typically a change that we want to see.
As a coach I see this a lot and a trend always develops where clients start talking about their ‘new year, new me’ philosophy. Of course, as someone who promotes and sees the benefits of change, development and continuous improvement I do really resonate with this.
That said, on the other hand, there is something that does make me feel rather uncomfortable about it. This is because I wonder where the motivation lies in such slogans and why a new year is required in order to stimulate positive change! Worst of all, like a lot of my gym-routines, my ‘new year, new me’ mantra tends to fade away after a week or two when reality hits.
So this year I am scrapping the ‘new year, new me’ mantra and instead will focus on the following 5 promises to myself to guide me with this process, and I hope you find them helpful too!
Promise 1: I will not wait for the new year
Unless I am thinking about my diet (as there’s still lots of food left!), there is no need to wait until the new year for me to start acting on those changes that I want to make! This does not mean that I am going to hurry them along but rather not rely on that 1st January date to kick them into action.
Promise 2: I will be mindful of the goals I set
I find that at times I set goals that I already know I would probably not achieve or not be truly motivated to work towards. This could be because the goals are too stretching, too easy, unrealistic, or perhaps because I lack certain self-beliefs about them. I therefore end up setting goals which I know I will not accomplish (that could be harmful for my self-esteem when I truly do not achieve them!) Therefore, I will spend time being mindful of what new goals I set, so that they are truly in line with my values and view of myself.
Promise 3: I will write and share my goals with others
I typically write my goals down in a very structured PDP table (geek!) and also discuss them with my coach. However, from now onwards I will be more vocal in sharing my objectives and what I want to achieve. The more you talk about a change, the more the chance that you will achieve it!
Promise 4: I will focus on my thoughts and behaviours
Sometimes I find that we focus a lot on actions, on the ‘doing’ part rather than our behaviours and attitudes. To change some of the habits that I have I will be focusing more on the underlying thoughts that are leading to certain actions (e.g. instead of losing weight I will focus on what is underneath that and the reason why that action is important to me.)
Promise 5: I will do some things for me and it will be okay
I’ve noticed how sometimes I can set goals based on what I feel I should be doing rather than because I really, genuinely and wholeheartedly want to do something. What’s more is when I then focus on a goal that is just for me, purely for my enjoyment, I feel guilty. This year I promise myself to be more mindful and kinder to myself and linking to Promise 4, be more aware of these thoughts.
I hope you find these promises useful as well. Feel free to adopt them yourself if you resonate with them and here’s to a wonderful start to the new year.