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Happiness,  productivity,  Success Strategy

Why New Year’s Resolutions Fail and How to Make it Work

Almost half of the Americans make New Year’s resolutions, but fewer than 10% successfully achieve them(source)! The most popular resolutions are staying fit, work-life balance, and personal enrichment. All these are great resolutions to improve one’s quality of life. Then why the success rate is so low, and what can we do to beat that?

One of my coaching clients set his goal to reduce his weight by going to the gym every day. Knowing that the key to setting achievable goals is to align them with one’s true essence, I asked him these clarifying questions:

What is the bigger purpose it is aligned to?
What will you feel when you achieve this?
What will you let go to make this happen?
How can you make this workout routine enjoyable/sustanable for you?

He didn’t care to answer those. Instead, with a very determined face, he said: “I can’t afford to be this heavy; I have no choice but to lose weight, or I get sick!” He also added that the “have to” mechanism had been the way for him to achieve anything in his life. Enjoying it was not a pre-requisite!” I let him go.

Fast forward 3 weeks. I asked him how he was doing with his workout routine. With a sigh, he said, “I am continuing it, but every time I have to drag myself, I don’t look forward to it, I keep on thinking about my work, and as soon as I am done, I rush back to my work! It is like a chore to me.”

“How can you make this workout routine enjoyable for you?” – I asked the same question. Unlike last time, his face lit up, “yes, that might be it! I don’t enjoy it, and that’s why I am not getting refreshed from this activity… I should find some other way of working out. I love playing tennis; maybe instead of a machine, I will do the workout by playing tennis!”

Moral of the story:

Many of us are capable of making a resolution and have the tenacity to make it work for some time. But the key to sustainable success is not all about just checking things off the list. Life is a precious gift and you deserve to enjoy it. Take the happiness path, have a meaningful long term vision and an enjoyable regular practice.  You can be in that elite small group in no time!

Related read: The Fuel of a Good Goal Is a Compelling Vision: 4 Ways to Craft

Wishing you a very Happy New Year!


How are you closing this year and preparing for 2021? Check out these Holiday/Year End offersAct soon!