Why Most New Year’s Resolutions Fizzle
If you are making resolutions for 2015, consider that most of them won’t last beyond three weeks. According to Forbes, less than 10 percent of New Year’s resolutions declared are actually accomplished This might lead you to believe that setting positive goals for the new year is a futile exercise, but we only fail because we don’t understand the dynamics of the subconscious mind.
Most of us attempt change by forcing our will power to cooperate with our goals. Will power is a faculty of consciousness — the part of your mind that comprises only a small percentage of your total mind power. And while we may start off with great enthusiasm for a few hours or a few days, we quickly run out of steam and abandon our goals.
All habits and behaviors originate in the subconscious mind. In order to bring about any permanent change, you must first convince the subconscious mind. Studies done at Yale University suggest that the subconscious mind is stronger than the conscious mind in influencing behavior.
Whether you want to break a persistent negative habit, such overeating, or create a life-affirming one, like a regular exercise program, the secret lies in making the new behavior second nature to you. Consequently, the new behavior becomes virtually effortless. As the Texas State Journal of Medicine (volume I) states:”All functions of the body may be influenced by mental causes.”
The Key is Start Slowly!
One of the biggest mistakes we make in setting our intentions for the new year is making a laundry list of everything we want to change. While it’s good to have lots of life-affirming goals, it would be so much more effective for you to start out with something easily managed that would make you feel better about yourself by accomplishing.
Don’t go for earth-shattering transformation right way. Start with little changes that will become big ones over time. For now, work on some simple daily behaviors that would give your morale a booster shot.
You may want to start out the new year by committing to do a few minutes of stretching when you get out of bed or before you go to sleep — or getting to sleep a half hour earlier during the work week. It may be drinking an extra glass or two of water or hydrating liquid every day or practicing deep breathing on a consistent basis. Start out slowly and build from there. Change then becomes exponential.
Once you gain the confidence by accomplishing a minor goal, you can tackle the larger ones. Following these rules will ensure that new actions come easily and effortlessly to you:
1. Be Positive
Always state your goal in the positive, avoiding words such as try, don’t, maybe, can’t, failure, etc. Don’t describe what behavior you want to move away from (example: I need to stop overeating); state it as behavior you are moving towards (example: I am creating a healthy body, with great vitality and flexibility).
2. Use the Present Tense
The subconscious mind responds best to suggestions that are stated in the now. For instance, I need to lose weight or I will make exercise a part of my life are both vague and totally ineffective in activating the subconscious. Exercise is a part of my daily routine; I am taking advantage of every opportunity to move my body is a more proactive way of engaging your mind’s potential.
3. Be Repetitive
Repeat your goal or resolution to yourself mentally or out loud, several times a day for a 21-day period. Representing your intention to your subconscious mind repeatedly establishes the new behavioral pattern. Do this for a full three weeks without a break, and you will greatly enhance your chances for creating permanent change.
4. Be Creative
Imagination is the most powerful tool of all. Find descriptive words or phrases that make you feel wonderful. And to give an even greater “power punch” at least once a day, spend a few moments (60 to 90 seconds) seeing, imagining, hearing, or feeling the positive outcome of establishing this new behavior in your life. For example, if your resolution is to maintain your ideal weight, hold that image in your mind as you take a few deep and gentle breaths.
Make permanent and positive changes this new year by taking practical and manageable steps towards your goals. My free ebook, A Year of Positive Habits, will help you achieve your next level. Download this FREE ebook via this article on Huffington Post. Feel free to share! This is the textbook for the Mind Module of Dr. LJ’s Natural Wellness Coaching Certification.
LindaJoy Rose, Ph.D. aka Dr. L J has over 25 years as an expert in subconscious dynamics and is a pioneer in the education and certification of hypnotherapists worldwide She currently trains coaches in Holistic Health, Life Makeover Strategies and Subconscious Dynamics through her Natural Wellness Academy specializing in an approach that encompasses Body, Mind and Spirit.