A recent study on New Year resolutions found that about 40% of people set resolutions at the start of the year, and less than half are successful after six months. We all want to make positive and impactful changes in our lives, but how can we make the changes last? Today is the last day of January 2022, and this means that we’re already one month down. Have you made any move or progress towards achieving your resolutions?
A human study conducted revealed two very important things as regards to new year resolutions.
- Only around 12% of people who make New Year’s resolutions felt that they were successful in achieving their goals.
- Some of the most common resolutions include losing weight, sticking to a healthier diet, and exercising regularly. Others are; making better financial choices, quitting smoking, and spending more time with family.
A new movement on the rise is the prioritizing of one’s mental health. Professional athletes like Simone Biles and Naomi Osaka sometime in 2021 pulled out from major tournaments stating mental health concerns. This started a movement that was endorsed by other professionals and prominent figures.
Beyond the severity of the mental health concerns raised by Biles and Osaka, regular folks are also now prioritizing their mental health. This has led to statements like “anything that threatens my peace of mind is too expensive.”
Your goals and new year resolutions could be the thing that most threatens your mental health and peace of mind. Setting outlandish, unrealistic goals can wreck you real fast. Therefore, when setting resolutions, it’s important to take time to reflect on the realistic, measured change you wish to see.
By taking smaller, more achievable steps towards your goals, there is a greater chance that you will keep them. This applies to all kinds of resolutions, including mental health. You can remarkably improve your mental health by taking small steps every day.
Here’s how to start. First of all ask; What kind of goals can you set?
Targets like exercising more, eating healthy and quitting smoking are likely to have a positive impact on your mental health. However, there are plenty of other ways to commit to boosting your well-being.
“You can have mental health goals such as getting your anxiety under control, becoming more assertive or gaining more confidence,” says Daniel Fryer, a psychotherapist at Priory Hospital Bristol. “Having these types of mental health goals can help with any lifestyle-type resolutions you set for yourself too, as when you are in a better headspace, you’re more likely to achieve them.”
Try gratitude journaling
Try setting simple, realistic goals, such as taking time to write in a ‘gratitude’ journal. Take a few minutes to write down a few things you are grateful for, and why you are grateful for them. Gratitude is a skill you can cultivate and will, in turn, shift your mindset towards seeing more positivity and optimism.
Don’t pressure yourself
It is true that January has ended, but that shouldn’t mount more pressure on you to get everything done. Sometimes we forget to do things, or simply don’t feel up to it – and that’s absolutely fine. It’s important to be compassionate with yourself. If you feel pressured, take a step back and simplify your goal. Think about what it is that you’re finding difficult and steps you can take to make it more achievable.
If you miss a day, acknowledge it and get back to those small actions. “These small actions compound and you’ve only missed one day. Prioritize it, and you will be straight back on the path to your goal. Sit back, reassess and strategize. Take it easy, but don’t be lazy or complacent.
Watch out for “8 Lifestyle Hacks that Boost Your Mental Health” in our subsequent articles. You don’t want to miss this.