Why We Don’t Keep Our New Year’s Resolutions
I am sure you’ve been sent every kind of comment about how you are wished a prosperous and healthy and dream-filled New Year. This week’s newsletter is that and much, much more.
May these weekly inspirations be a source of love, of wisdom, of learning, of motivation and inspiration. And may they support you on your journey this year to help you discover your true greatness, passions and purpose in your life.
In thinking about what you want for 2007, my guess is that at some recent point you have said, “This year is going to be different. This year I am going to stick to my resolutions. This year I’m finally going to get off my buts (I would do it, BUT…I tried too, BUT…) In those moments that you promised yourself that you were going to follow through, you felt good. You felt strong. You felt in control, responsible, powerful and that your life was on track.
Yes, this year is going to be different you told yourself. This year is the year my dreams all come true. This is the year my ship comes in.
So why do so many New Years promises never happen?
That’s exactly what this newsletter issue is about. Take a few minutes and read the following scenarios and their corresponding questions and solutions and you’ll be well on your way to making this the best year you’ve ever had.
If you are not one of the people who fit the following 3 scenarios because you always do what you say you’re going to do, please forward this to someone who you think it might benefit. For everyone else, this is for you.
SCENARIO 1 – You go for it full on in the first few days or weeks, only to fizzle out shortly thereafter. You’re motivated as hell. If your resolution is to get in shape, you hit the gym running. You pay for a year in advance because you’re committed this time. Then you miss a workout, then two, then three, then eventually you stop altogether.
Has that happened to you? If your answer is yes, first realize that it didn’t “Happen” to you. Unless something tragic “happened” to you, it is not like some outside force stopped you.
What’s more likely is that you probably made some kind of list of goals you wanted to achieve (at the gym or otherwise) and then as you began to do them, very quickly you realized all the changes that would have to take place in your life. In some cases, it would mean a tremendous amount of inconvenience and a major interruption in “business as usual.” In short, it would be too painful to change your routine.
As humans, we are all motivated by avoiding pain or by gaining pleasure. If something is too painful, no matter how much pleasure it may bring, we won’t do it. And vice versa. If something is so pleasurable that not having it would be painful, you’ll go for it, even if it means experiencing a lot of pain along the way.
Using the pain example, who really wants to get up at 5 am and go exercise rigorously? Because that would be painful, you start to come up with excuses as to why you don’t do what you say. You think, “It’s too cold outside and I’m too tired anyway and I’ve got a long day ahead and I don’t want to wear myself out.
Using the pleasure example, if you were going to be paid 10 million dollars at the end of 90 days to go to the gym every day, I bet you would go. Why? Because the pleasure of receiving the money would far outweigh the pain of going to the gym. All of a sudden, it wouldn’t be too cold, and you wouldn’t be too tired and it wouldn’t matter if you were going to be up 24 hours, you’d be at the gym. Once again, the pleasure of 10 million dollars would far outweigh the pain of the cold, etc.
SOLUTION – Decide what your primary motivation is, pain or pleasure. If it’s pain, you want to avoid, here’s the trick. Create a ton of pain in your life for not having what you want. The reason is that if 2 things that are painful bump into one another, you’ll avoid the bigger pain.
If it’s pleasure that motivates you, create a list of all the wonderful things that will happen to you and how great your life will be when you stick to your goals. What will happen is that it will be too painful to not have that pleasure.
SCENARIO 2- You haven’t made any resolutions or you gave up making them years ago. Maybe it’s because you don’t believe you’ll follow through on them? Have you become a victim of your own thoughts? Have you lost faith in yourself? Do you not trust yourself anymore?
If that’s the case, understand that the past does not equal the future. The past is the past. Just because you did things one way for years doesn’t mean that you have to do them that way forever.
SOLUTION – Begin by setting some small intentions and goals and make sure you follow through on them. It’s like building a muscle. A beautiful, sculpted body does not happen overnight. Be patient with yourself. Take small steps and then gradually you’ll be able to do more and more. Eventually you will have completely restructured your life and experienced very little pain along the way.
SCENARIO 3 – You make very small resolutions. If that’s the case, we’re back to our old buddy, FEAR. What happens if you set huge goals and then don’t accomplish them? Then you have proof that you’re not good enough. As we talked about in the 4 previous newsletters on fear, no one wants that kind of proof because then life is not worth living. That’s the fear of failure all over again.
But if you set big goals and you succeed, that means that your self-limiting beliefs have not been true and that’s the fear of success once again.
SOLUTION – Recognize if the fear of success or the fear of failure is stopping you. In either case, the only way to permanently deal with those issues is to find and remove your core, unconscious beliefs.
So, that’s it for this issue my friend. May you be blessed beyond belief this week
and may all of your dreams and your success come true. And may everything you wish for be the least that you get.
Until next issue…
To your success,
Darshan G. Shanti – The 24 Hour Champion
President – Freedom Incorporated