Did you know that 60% of Americans have a New Year’s Resolution? And around the world there literally are tens of millions of people that will make a promise for the new year. Pretty amazing, isn’t it?
Unfortunately what isn’t amazing is the staggering statistics on how many resolutions will fail. Some researchers point to a 97% failure rate. Eek!
What makes so many of us fail so miserably at keeping a promise to ourselves? There are many theories and probably some truth in all of them. One I find particularly intriguing is the promise of hope theory. We humans love to think about transformation and visualizing the person we will become. It’s like an adrenaline rush for us. Just the idea of WHAT we can do better creates a false high in our brain.
But reality quickly sets back in. We begin to realize the work required to make our change and that makes change far less sexy. Even if we make some initial progress in sticking to our goal, it is inevitable that we slip. And that first setback can destroy that feel-good high we were on.
There’s no sure-fire way to guarantee 100% success rate for everyone who makes a resolution, but there is one super easy way to help improve your success rate. It doesn’t require hard work, deprivation, hypnosis, or really much of anything. It is as simple as changing your vocabulary. That’s right, it’s a simple change in words.
How is that possible? Consider the words that often comprise a resolution: quit, stop, reduce, lose, less, cut, don’t, avoid, restrict. These words are full of negativity. Try changing your resolution to include only positive words.
For example, lets consider two of the most popular resolutions: Lose Weight, Get More Fit. Here are ways to improve your success rate through your choice of positive words.
Promise Yourself to:
- Eat more vegetables, instead of cutting out all junk food
- Drink more water, rather than stop drinking soda
- Move more often, versus quit being lazy
- Get restorative sleep, instead of vowing not to stay up late
- Spend more time being active with friends, rather than spend less time watching TV
- Check-in regularly with support system, instead of asking friends to be food police
- Journal daily about positives, versus stop negative view of myself
Seem too simple? Well, don’t discount it until you give it a try. Considering the abysmal stats on successful resolutions, what do you have to lose?
Think about it…if you eat more vegetables and drink more water then you have less room for junk food. If you spend more time moving and being active time with friends, then you have less time to sit on your behind. If you spend time each day focusing on positives, then it will be harder for your negative side to creep in to your thoughts.
If you present your resolution in an encouraging format and fill your day with affirmative things then there won’t be any room for the negativity that leads to failure. This can be effective regardless of what your resolution is.
What POSITIVE words can you utilize to make an improvement to your life in 2014?
Copyright 2014 Lynn Bode