First written by Al Bell January 5, 2019
Happy New Year! I hope you entered the New Year excited and safely. As with every year there is an excitement of leaving the old and entering the new. It’s much like when one gets a new outfit. For that time, the excitement of wearing something new is refreshing as compared to what was worn.
This phase is much like what is experienced when the New Year is entered. It is refreshing, uplifting, and energizing.
So, what happens after the New Year passes. Does one still have the fire and energy a month or two into the year as when started?
According to U.S.News by the second week of February, 80% of those who started off with New Year resolutions seem to lose that drive and fire to maintain the resolution. Why is that? Could it be because of a life impacting situation? Or are expectations set too high? Whatever the case, many seem to fade quickly from the initial energy of the New Year to practically forgetting there was even a resolution conceived.
The question is, how does one sustain that energy? Well, a solution may not be that far off. Let’s use an example.
In order to have a fire, certain elements must be present. The widely known Fire Triangle shows the elements of Heat, Fuel, and Oxygen. Simply put, when there is enough heat generated with an available fuel source in an oxygenated environment, a fire will be started. If these conditions are sustained the fire will continue. If any one of the elements are removed the fire will be affected.
Likewise one must accept a few practical principals to help them maintain the energy and fire that started the resolution. Below, I share my simple Sure Fire Ways to kickstart the New Year…and Sustain.
- Be Flexible Be Realistic-Who said resolutions have to be concrete and unmovable. Many times when one makes a New Year resolution, subconsciously it is made with ceilings that cannot be raised and doors that cannot be opened. This is not reality. Goals are generally realistically set. For example, if you are not a regular bowler then you might be considered a beginner and bowl under a hundred pins per game. To realistically challenge yourself a goal to average 200 pins a game in 6 months might be favored over doing this in a month. Don’t kill the resolution by putting too much pressure on yourself. Being flexible and realistic help to manage the pursuit toward the goal.
- Accountability Partner-Friends are good to have, good friends, are a jewel and a must-have, especially when one is navigating through life. Good friends can help pick you up when you feel down and motivate you when you need motivating. Connecting with someone who can help you stay accountable in life and to your goals will certainly help you reach them. Don’t take this for granted.
- Remember to take Stock-Have you ever had an experience which stuck with you, whether good or bad? Do you remember it like it was today? Doing this will help one stay on a path to success and away from that bad taste, thought, or decision which was made during times past. Think, why else did I experience that situation? Maybe it was so traumatic for a reason? It could be a reminder of what not to do. Remember to take stock and stay on the path.
- Embrace enjoyment-Whatever is started, have fun, have fun, have fun! Enjoy the ride on whatever path is taken. Sure there will be bumps along the way. This is expected and should not throw one off balance. If faced with a naysayer, hear what is said, understand they have a right to their opinion and use it as fuel to complete your goals. Never let what is said steal your joy.
- Note others before you-This point actually blows away any excuses that one may conjure up in not reaching their prize. One has to believe that someone at some point in this life has completed, excelled, defeated, conquered, persevered, or overcame a similar life hurdle to achieve the prize. What seems to separate one from another is what author Angela Duckworth refers to as “GRIT”. What you decide to contribute in going toward a goal may be quite different when compared to another. Will you decide to go all out no matter what to reach the goal? Think about it!
So, there you have it! My Sure Fire Ways to Kickstarting the New Year…and Sustaining! Remember the Fire Triangle? All three elements are needed to have a fire.
Likewise, incorporating these suggestions is a Sure Fire way to Kickstart the New Year…and Sustain.