New Year has begun and is well under way.
much ado about starting anew with various intentions and personal goals people
set out to accomplish.
this time of year, however, many people are also susceptible to the pressure of
making more meaningful and valuable resolutions.
the pressure is more about sticking to the goals which often poses more
challenges that could sometimes compromise all the New Year’s buzz of excitement.
January is considered to be one of the most stressful times of the year.
When all the initial bubbles of hope and aspirations fizzle out and
dissipate into what feels like futile attempts, many people are experiencing a
sense of helplessness and dejection.
Old habits are difficult to alter and often involve committed strategies if
desired to achieve a lasting change.
To ensure that
every New Year’s resolutions not fall to the wayside after January and make
them stick, it is important to contextualize the goals and ascribe them
When the goals
are established in connection to personal values, they become much more
significant and hence, more likely to be followed through.
One of the
reasons why many people have difficulty keeping their New Year’s resolutions is
because the goals are not individual enough, lacking the specific, subjective
meaning attached to them.
personal reasons for wanting to make specific change would be an important initial
step to making New Year’s resolutions that can be kept.
Focus On Progress
According to research, it is equally
important to focus on the initial progress made rather than what needs to be accomplished
When the focus is more on what has
been accomplished and gained (however minute), people tend to be more motivated
and stay committed (Koo & Fishbach, 2008).
Recognizing progress can foster a
greater sense of confidence and optimism in the feasibility of the goals actually
This concept is definitely derived from a
strength-based approach, encouraging any and all desired change to be built on existing
strengths in lieu of perceived deficiency.
Change is difficult.
Change also comes with a deep sense of fear and
reservations for potential failure.
As with any goal-setting endeavors, what makes New
Year’s resolutions more than a mere ritual is each individual’s personal
meaning acquired in the process.
In this vein, the greatest obstacle to realizing this year’s
resolutions may be the lack of clarify as to why we are wanting to effect any change
in the first place.
Perhaps the bigger task at hand is finding the answer
to this very individual quest.
M., & Fishbach, A. (2008). Dynamics of self-regulation: How
(un)accomplished goal actions affect motivation. Journal of Personality and
Social Psychology, 94, 183-195.