4 effective ways to keep New year’s resolutions

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“In the new year I will…” As often under the chiming clock we say to ourselves something like that. Or even recorded. And how rarely able to keep that promise for at least a month and to fulfill his plan. Here are four tips psychology Professor Carrie McGonigal, which will help to change that.

Christmas holidays – a time of optimism, hope and renewal. And we all firmly believe that this time we will all keep our new year’s resolutions. Well, that is already Valentine’s Day we completely forget?.. Same as last year. And the year before. And… well, you understand.

But what if there was a chance this year to change everything? There is a whole science about how to set goals. The problem is that, usually, valuable knowledge is drowning in information noise and just did not reach us. Kelly McGonigal, Professor of psychology from Stanford, says that from the scientific point of view, the right to set and achieve goals. And here are four science-based advice on how to correctly formulate the task and how to achieve goals.

1. The goal should be meaningful and not easily available

Our brain is so confined that we love awards, so often we set a basic goal of just “for show”. Went to the gym – well done. Wrote a note in the diary – well done. “To set goals is very nice, says Kelly McGonigal. And often people do this solely for the sake of a pleasant experience that now their lives will change.” Think about what you want in the new year. Now ask yourself the question – “why do I want this?”. Now do the same with the received response. And so three times. For example, if you want to quit Smoking, why you want it? To preserve the health. Well, why do you want to keep healthy? To live to see the birth of grandchildren. And this is a powerful motivator. “This chain of questions we get to what is really important. And the idea of this “higher” sense, helps us to achieve the intended purpose.”

4 effective ways to keep New year's resolutions

2. Focus on process, not on the result

Deciding to change something in your life, we often fixate on one magical hour X, when the goal is achieved and that our lives are wonderfully transformed. But we can’t predict how the rest of the events six months later, and we definitely can’t transform the reality in accordance with your own dreams. But we can focus on each small step leading to the achievement of the goal.

“The idea that we need all at once decisively and irreversibly to change, often confuses people. While small incremental changes, setting the stage for a big change,” explains Kelly McGonigal. For example, if you are naturally shy, but would like to chat with people, get started today with some stuff. Go with colleagues to lunch or say Hello to a neighbor in the Elevator. And then just follow the bread crumbs – a small step for small step, one small act of victory over their own shyness in others.

“You can take a small everyday deeds conformable with the set goal, not even being sure what exactly you are seeking and what your commitment will be,” adds Professor Kelly McGonigal.

3. Think positive

So, what words you formulate the task, it is very important. Specify what you want to achieve, and not waste time on what you want to avoid, so you have a much better chance to force myself to go to the goal. “Roughly speaking, explains Kelly McGonigal, is just brain chemistry. Any negative thoughts trigger the mechanisms of suppression of brain activity, whereas the positive tasks include segments of the brain responsible for logic and fun.”

Think about what you would like to preserve in my life, what it added?.. This approach will allow us to find more inner strength if your resolve begins to wane. “The words “I don’t want to be fat” will not help to keep the motivation when you’ve just eaten a packet of biscuits,” says Kelly McGonigal. Love yourself. It works.

4 effective ways to keep New year's resolutions

4. Prepare for failure (in the best sense of the word)

It is impossible to avoid failures, setbacks and moments of weakness. But it is important not to succumb to them. Most, skipping a trip to the gym or eating a piece of cake, despair and tell myself that once they once fell, nothing at all to try. But this is the wrong approach.

Our task is not to avoid difficulties and failures, and to learn to foresee them. Ask yourself where something could go wrong? For example, if you know what the feeling of hunger always makes you desire to eat something very tasty, but very harmful, bring something you can eat and so to hold on to healthy food. Psychologists call it a contingency plan of the type “if-then”: if there’s an event And I will go in advance in a certain way B. In fact, this program is for your brain in the event of unexpected circumstances.

And when things don’t go according to plan and you feel frustrated, remind yourself of why your goal is so important for you. The simplest memory of a higher sense of what you are doing, can keep you afloat and help you move in the right direction. And suddenly you find that Valentine’s Day has long passed, and you still got it.