How to trick your brain into keeping a new year’s resolution

new year resolutions

New Year resolutions are no less than a tradition in the society. It is indeed the perfect time to pick up those unaccomplished goals, set some new ones and begin the journey of your transformation. But being honest, many of us give up in just a few weeks. No matter how easy it seems to incorporate a change in your life at the New Year, we realize how hard it is the moment we start implementing the goals in reality. So does that mean the New Year resolutions are meant to be broken? Of course not, here are 6 tactics with which you can trick your brain to achieve your New Year resolutions.

1. Make sure your goals are achievable

Set goals

There might be a list of things that you want to accomplish this year. But if you are planning to achieve all at once it might be a possibility that you would drop the idea soon. You should understand that it’s not easy to change all your habits in a day. Pick one habit at once. Incorporate that into your life and then move on to the next if you really want to adapt it for a lifetime. For instance, you can’t straightway exercise an hour a day. You will probably get one worn-out in a few days. However, if you start with 10 minutes a day and gradually increase the time you are likely to continue it for a longer duration.

2. Associate your goals with existing habits

There might be certain habits that you have developed over the years. They are so ingrained in your mind that you just act accordingly without even realizing. These habits are the cues that you can attach to your new habits. For instance, if you prefer working out in the evening then find the cue with which you can associate it. Say, as soon as you come back home from work you will leave for the gym. Try this trick for a few days and you will find that your mind will start pairing these two things together and would automate the new habit just like the old one.

3. Have a clear ‘Why’

Have you ever given a thought why do you want to achieve a particular goal? If you really want to stay motivated you must have a strong reason for every goal. So, when you sit down to decide your new year’s resolutions write down a major reason why you want to achieve that. For instance, if you want to read more books this year make it clear in your mind why do you want to do so. Maybe you want to enhance intellectual skills or learn something new. The reason should be big enough to drive you towards your goals.

4. Set up a Motivational Environment

Motivational poster at study desk

Your surroundings play a major role in setting up your mind to achieve something. For instance, if your goal is to do yoga every day but your yoga mat remains inside your cupboard then there are chances that you would procrastinate to get it daily. However, if you have kept the mat right in front of your eyes then it is likely that you will pick it up and do yoga regularly. In fact, there are studies to back this up. Similarly, if you have a habit of drinking a lot of aerated drinks or sodas then removing them from your refrigerator can prevent you from drinking them as they would not be easily accessible to you.

5. Visualize your Goals

Studies have shown that people who can visualize their goals are able to actually achieve them. Visualization can be used as a powerful tool to bring your mind in the action mode. You might already have heard of keeping a vision board. It is a visual representation of all your goals. You can include pictures, quotes or anything that would motivate you to take the action in the direction of achieving your goals. Similarly, we can visualize in the mind how we would feel on achieving a particular goal and use that experience as motivation. These techniques have been observed to be more successful than making a simple to-do list.

6. Reward Yourself

Celebrate your little wins every day. Many life coaches suggest keeping a ‘Win-List’ that is a list of small wins that you have made in a day as a method to keep you motivated to achieve your goals every day. Rewarding yourself gives you a sense of pride which hence acts as a trigger for your brain. You might have seen that people who are following a diet or want to lose weight often keep a ‘cheat day’ in a week where they do not follow the particular diet as a reward for them being so disciplined the whole week. This little tactic tricks their brain and keeps them motivated to follow the diet or the workout plan in the next week as well.

Do your New Year goals still appear daunting? We are sure that with the strategies you will be all set to take over your goals once again. Just remember that you do not need to overwhelm yourself by doing all the things at once. Believe yourself, start small, take your time and your aspirations would soon turn into your achievements!