Most of us value self-improvement and the opportunity to start anew when given a clean slate. While we are interested in making a resolution, it’s been estimated that only 8% of us actually follow through on our plans. Why?
A typical resolution sets us up for failure.
First of all, there’s no rule that says January 1st is the prime time to begin making positive change. We can always reboot our New Year’s resolution or plan for our own start date. Any day can work, and we can still give ourselves the one-year time frame.
Secondly, we often fail to take credit for gradually moving out of our comfort zone. Unlike the fellow struggling in the illustration, we can stretch our comfort zone a bit at a time. As we move from this growing edge, we have an excellent chance of succeeding. When we take small actions that that become new habits, we build the foundation for the next level up. Small steps can produce larger gains in the long run.
Lastly, we don’t take time to consider the one personal quality that could support us in our goal. Most resolutions focus on the action that we think will lead to the specific desired change without considering what kind of person we’ll need to be to act in new ways. Identifying that trait is like discovering the essential missing ingredient for a recipe.
Instead of making a simple resolution, consider designing a BE-DO Resolution. Take time to zoom in on one characteristic you need to develop. Which quality would help you meet your goal? Try out words to complete the sentence, “To reach my goal, I need to be more_________________”.
The improved resolution has two parts:
the BE and the DO.
Example of a BE-DO Goal
I will be more disciplined so I stop making excuses
and stick to an exercise plan.
Instead of "I will exercise for thirty minutes every day", the BE-Do resolution would state "I will be more disciplined so I can do more daily exercise". The number of minutes can be increased over time. Why is this BE–DO resolution more effective than the TO DO statement alone?
By giving your attention to the quality you are developing, you are increasing your awareness of how that quality shows up in your behavior, whether it pertains to your goal or your life in general. Frequently during the day, you’ll observe times when disciple is helping or preventing you from achieving what you want. The heightened awareness gives you an accurate picture of how discipline is affecting your fitness goal. Excuses will no longer hold any weight. You’ll begin to see the possibilities of reaching your goal as you see you are becoming more disciplined and committed.
Whatever the mind can conceive and believe, the mind can achieve.
Every day you have a new chance to be more disciplined than you were the previous year. If you slip up one day, you have the next day to be more disciplined. You have a full year to practice being more disciplined, especially in relation to exercise. You’re not thinking in terms of winning or failing. You’re seeing your purpose as changing and growing. You eliminate the need to compare yourself to others. ***** The best reason comes last. BE-DO Resolutions are part of the BE-DO-HAVE concept. We must BE the kind of person to DO the kind of things that will enable us to HAVE what we want in life.
THE IMPORTANCE OF PLANNING
At this point, you are ready to get into the specifics of your resolution. Here are a few questions to get you started.
What will it look like if I am on target with my BE-DO resolution?
What obstacles could come up?
How can I handle those obstacles?
What do I need?
Who can help me?
What can I use as motivators?
Planning your BE-DO Resolution will give you a jump-start for a positive start to the new year. With the right mindset and strategies, you can be part of the exclusive group that succeed in accomplishing their new year’s goal.
For your BE-DO GOAL PLANNER,
Irene Caniano helps Millennials develop the eleven essential skills so they can advance in their personal and professional lives with clarity, confidence and minimal stress. She is the author of Design Your Happiness: 9 Essential Elements to Create the Life You Want. Follow Irene on Facebook for inspiration and tips on productivity.