I know, I know. Resolutions are so last year.
Most people break their New Year’s Resolutions by January 10. Others scoff at silly, self-torturous New Year’s Resolutions. But hopefully they still set goals—of some kind. Otherwise, where are they going in life?
We all have the opportunity each and everyday to set a goal and raise our own standards for ourselves. And—get this—it doesn’t matter if you’ve already blown it in 2015. Start again.
1. Begin again
Failure is part of reaching our goals. You must fail sometimes, or you don’t learn. Don’t view failure as final. It’s just one day. Start again tomorrow. You have all year to get it right.
2. Shift from “Future self” to “Current self”
You can raise your standards for yourself right now. It sounds simple because it is. Think of it this way: Yesterday, I was a guy who woke up at 7am. Now I’m a guy who wakes up at 6am. It’s my new normal. It’s not a goal or a future place I want to get to. I’ve just decided it’s what I do.
3. Create a plan
Saying “I’m a guy who wakes up at 6am” is fine, but I probably won’t believe myself unless I have a plan I know I can pull off. So I dial it in with specifics:
• Eat dinner every night before 8pm
• Turn off the TV by 10pm—no exceptions
• Go straight to bed at 10pm
• Leave my phone/ipad/computer in the other room
• Set alarm for 6am
• Disable the “snooze” function
4. Tell someone the plan
Share your plan with someone close to you who will encourage you and not critique you. You want someone who understands an ongoing pursuit of goals—not instant perfection.
5. Press on
Don’t give up. If you’ve decided that the change is valuable, don’t convince yourself it’s not because of discouragement or past lack of discipline. Stick with it. Baby steps. One day at a time.
Raise your standard in some area today. It doesn’t matter if you’ve already blown it twice this week. Start again. Convince yourself that it’s just how you roll now… like brushing your teeth.
It can still be a happy new year.