Last week I gave you a few tips on how to keep your New Years Resolutions. The trick is to avoid using willpower to achieve your goals. Remember, will power creates won’t power. Before you know it your initial enthusiasm to change your ways will be replaced by resistance and a lack of motivation. How can you bring a new graceful habit into your life and avoid the will power/won’t power struggle? Here are a few final tips:
1. Just do it.
If we asked ourselves every morning, Do I really want to get out of bed and get ready for work?, we’d never get there. The questioning alone will weaken our resolve. The successful habit we acquire is the one where we don’t ask ourselves whether or not we feel like doing it. Just do it–with as little mental conversation as possible.
2. Forgive yourself.
It is inevitable that you will slip up along the way. Once people break their diet or forget to exercise, they often give up with a, “Oh, what’s the use?” attitude. Instead, expect to slip up and don’t make it mean anything. Since you didn’t tell anyone about your goal (see last weeks blog post), no one knows you’ve slipped. Just get back on the horse quietly without a lot of fanfare.
3. Feel good now.
Don’t wait for the manifestation of your goals before you feel better. Let yourself feel great now. Imagine what it will feel like to be healthier, more disciplined, more relaxed, more successful. Walk around in that state. The more you can experience how it will feel with all your senses, the sooner your dreams will be realized.
4. Be gentle with yourself.
The way to bypass the willpower/won’t power dynamic is to be as loving as you can to yourself. Don’t judge. Be as kind and forgiving as you would be with your dearest friend. Shoot for where you want to go from wherever you are without judgment. Harshness doesn’t work. Try loving yourself into the person you want to be.
I’d love to hear your reactions to this and what your experience has been.
Wishing you the gentlest of New Years.