Every year in the month of January, millions of people set goals for themselves, and every year, millions of people fail to achieve their goals. Why do we fail to achieve our new year’s resolutions? What habit is contributing to the failure to achieve our goals?
In the month of January every life coach, blogger and guru posts on an article about how to achieve your new years resolutions, advice and often a cynical perspective as to why we should not be making resolutions. More often than not, the advice that is shared is the same and laced with the same old clichés.
Do we really need more advice?
Before we go any further, let’s be honest for a second. Do you really need any more, new years resolutions advice? My guess is you’ve already read more advice than you know what do with or even apply. Every expert or guru has shared a million different strategies ‘guaranteed’ to change your life. All of this advice gets confusing and leads to overwhelm as well as resulting in delayed or no action being taken because your brain is not good a dealing with a lot of information at one time. It is a common assumption that information is a good thing; nevertheless, anything in excess can be bad of you, including too much information. Many people make the mistake of taking on board too much information or try to change too many behaviours at once, this decision results in our mental faculties and emotions checking out, which causes us to become stuck, indecisive and have no idea what to do next. This is why we need to return to basics.
We do we fail?
Why do the majority of people fail to achieve their new years resolutions? What is the 1% doing in order to achieve their resolutions? People fail because they simply do not do, what they say they are going to do. More often than not, people know what needs to be done, but they do not make the commitment and take consistent action to achieve their goals. This lack of accountability is a dangerous habit; it’s a constant roadblock to success unless it is replaced by new habits of action and follow-through. So, how do you cultivate more accountability into your life?
The Power of Sharing
As human beings we love to talk about ourselves, this habit does sound a little egocentric, but it can be one of our greatest strengths if used wisely. One of the best strategies we can do to motivate and bring more accountability into our lives is to share our goals or resolutions with the people within our social circle, but no just anyone. It is important to share your goals or resolutions with someone who actively listens and remembers the events that are going on in your life, because this person, the active listener, will remember your goals and ask you about your progress the next time they see you.
We all have this person in our social circle, you spend an afternoon with them in a coffee shop and casually mention, that you are thinking of learning a foreign language or starting a business, then you go about your week like normal, then one day, you run into them at the tube and they quiz you about you business start-up or French lessons but you’ve done nothing towards your goal the entire week. In that moment, you feel like a failure or you’ve let yourself and them down. You rush home and suddenly you have all the motivation you’ve ever needed.
Social accountability brings a sense of urgency or a deadline, we innately need to prove our value to our peers and take action knowing there is an audience to our successes and failures as well as a deadline. When we achieve our goals, social accountability, brings about a positive reinforcement which spurs us on to set more goals and to continue to better ourselves.
As always, insight without action is futile. How do you plan on making social accountability a part of your daily routine? Or do you have insights on your experience with social accountability? Please let me know by using the comments box below. Thank you for reading, sharing and commenting with such kindness and enthusiasm.
Photo Credit: Hakusan, iStock ID: 20702348