The Scientific Approach to Keeping the New Year’s ResolutionMarcusCannon
The Scientific Approach to Keeping the New Year’s Resolution
Even just a few days or weeks into the New Year, that fabled resolution you proudly exclaimed on the 31st of December feels more like a burden than a bright new beginning. The takeaway menu and prospect of a few swift pints down the local seem more tempting than ever now you’re trying to cut down. In fact, according to a YouGov poll featured in The Guardian, only 14% of us Brits follow through with the resolution all the way to next year — with only a fifth of us getting past March.
So if you’re wobbling in the early reaches of the year, we’ve decided to employ the steady hand of science to guide you along the New Year’s resolution tightrope.
Restrict Yourself to One Resolution
If you’ve planned a massive overhaul of your lifestyle, cutting out everything you enjoy and increasing all the efforts you despise, you’re pretty much bang on to fail. Concentrate your efforts into one resolution to stand a greater chance of succeeding through the year – giving you a chance to indulge in some areas.
Avoid Repeat Resolutions
Respected psychologist, Professor Richard Wiseman, believes that re-attempting failed resolutions is doomed to fail. The same temptations and disappointments are likely to be your downfall again, and the previous failures will weigh heavy in the back of your mind.
Slow Run in December
Maxwell Maltz, the author of Psycho-Cybernetics (a system of ideas to improve a person’s self-image) argued that it takes 30 days to break a habit. Whilst the number of days has been argued since the concept was launched in 1960, it is widely agreed that it is impossible to simply change habits immediately.
If your resolution involves changing or removing a habit, the first 30 days may come as a shock. Implement a slow run throughout December to acclimatise to the change in habit – then come out fighting in the New Year.
Whilst it may be tempting to keep a resolution private in case of humiliating failure, proudly exclaiming your intentions could put extra impetus on you to succeed. Also, the help of a supportive team can help guide you at your weakest, offering help and a crutch upon which to lean in your time of need.
Chronicle Successes and Failures
Like all sciences, it is important to record your progress throughout the resolution process. This can help you identify when and why you felt weakest – helping you implement preventative measures in the future. Whether this helps you navigate temptation and realise your resolution, or simply offers a guide for next year, chronicled progress could become an invaluable tool for a better you.
Create a Resolution-Ready Environment
If you are constantly surrounded by temptation to break your resolution – a will of steel will be needed to persevere. However creating an environment which is dedicated to resolution follow-through will help increase your chances of success.
If you are looking to make changes to your working life, improving your workspace is perhaps one of the best pillars of support you could implement.
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