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The New Year's Resolution Trap

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What You Need to Know

  • Many of us feel bad.
  • Resolutions tend to relate to those negative emotions.
  • The author doubts focusing on negative feelings leads to long-term success.

When we make a New Year’s resolution, we’re making a decision to do or not do something, to accomplish a personal goal or break a habit.

Such resolutions are based on negative emotions, things about us we aren’t satisfied or happy with.

Resolutions seem motivating at first, but they can create feelings of anxiety and decreased self-worth.

This focus on negative feelings seldom provides long-term motivation.

Last year, a survey from YouGov conducted for the productivity app creator Evernote, revealed that:

1. More Americans were planning to make resolutions — and were approaching those resolutions more seriously.

About one-third of Americans (32%) planned to make New Year’s resolutions, compared to only 28% from a survey conducted the year before.

2. Health-related goals were the top priority.

Roughly two-thirds (66%) of Americans who planned on making resolutions intended to make health-related resolutions (e.g., mental health, healthy eating, etc.)

3. With economic uncertainty, career-related goals seemed to be on hold.

Of those who planned on making resolutions, only 35% reported them being career-related. Career-related goals were the sixth most popular resolution type behind health (66%), fitness (54%), personal finance (52%), productivity/organization (41%), and relationships (40%).

4. Productivity apps are becoming a popular way to achieve goals.

Roughly two-thirds (66%) of Americans who intended to make resolutions said they would consider using a productivity app to stay on track with their New Year’s resolutions.

5. People are not that likely to keep their resolutions.

More on this topic

A survey of 2,000 Americans organized by Crispy Green found that the participants took an average of 32 days to break New Year’s resolution — and 68% said they abandoned their resolutions even earlier than that.

The Mistakes

Here are seven mistakes that plague us when we make our resolutions:

1. You’re treating a marathon like a sprint.

2. You put the cart before the horse.

3. You don’t believe in yourself.

4. You engage in too much thinking, not enough doing.

5. You don’t track your progress.

6. You have no social support.

7. You know you’re what but not your why.

If we’re going to have so many problems with the resolution-setting process, most of us would be better off if we simply think about the things we did well in the previous year and develop simple, useful goals we can easily achieve on the first working day and in the first week of 2022 that will help us feel good and set the tone for a great new year.


Lloyd Lofton (Photo: Lofton)Lloyd Lofton is the founder of Power Behind the Sales and the author of The Saleshero’s Guide to Handling Objections.

 

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..(Image: Farizun Amrod Saad/Shutterstock)