The surest way to fail at a New Year's resolution is to make one. A survey by US News on the topic says that 80 percent of your resolutions are bound to fail by February. With the New Year around the corner, some of us may be looking to ring out some old habits while ringing in the new. But the annoying thing about new year resolutions is that they are easy to make but difficult to follow. Whether you want a ripped body or a fulfilling relationship, you find yourself unmotivated in just weeks or days. Why is it that New Year's resolution is so hard to keep? We have a few reasons why!
The Sham That is New Year's Resolution
Apart from making clichéd, overrated resolutions, people tend to pick resolutions that they are bound to not commit to, says Dr Era Dutta, Consultant Neuropsychiatrist, Mind Wellness, Kolkata. "If you really wanted to do it, say lose weight or go to the gym, you'd pick any day to do and not wait for a special day like the New Year," she points out. Deferring something for the New Year shows you are already not committed to it. New Year Resolutions And The Art of Keeping Them Alive: Tips to Stick to These Most Commonly Made And Broken Promises In 2019.
The Wrong Attitude
What does one do before quitting smoking? In the preceding days, you do the exact opposite and smoke your lungs out. "People start out negatively by binging or going on a drinking spree, before the actual date when they plan on quitting. That's wrong. You need to start on a neutral plane before you take up the resolution," Dr Dutta adds.
Setting unrealistic targets is another factor which makes New Year's resolution so darn hard to maintain. Be practical in your approach rather than aiming for the moon. Dr Dutta says that when you say that you will lose ten kilograms in three months, you end up demotivated and disappointed when it doesn't happen. That's one of the reasons why many people fail to keep the resolution.
Resolutions are Meant to be Broken
We often justify breaking our New Year's resolution by saying: "Resolutions are meant to be broken." How does subscribing to that notion affect your resolve? "This echoes with people too much. Automatically, your brain interprets it as it is OK to break resolutions. You fail to treat it seriously," Dr Dutta says.
Wishing someone a happy New Year isn't complete without asking them what their resolution for the year is. So people feel obligated to keep one even if they are not keen on following it. And it's easy to fail at a resolution that you don't feel very strongly about.
So as you sashay into the new year, don't set unrealistic goals and don't take up a resolution if you don't want to. "If it makes you feel demotivated, you don't have to go through with it," advises Dr Dutta. She also recommends the reward-punishment system to bolster your resolve. "Each time you falter, punish yourself. And each time you achieve something, reward," she adds.