organised 1200pxWere you one of the many people who set a new year’s resolution for themselves? If so, well done. In this 2 part blog post I will give you the 5 things you will need in place to actually stick and keep to your resolutions this year.

Before you commit to a set of new year resolutions this year, just reflect on how many of these you have kept over the last few years. I’m hazarding a guess that after the initial zeal of good intentions wore off, the new resolutions went by the way side.

I was talking with my personal trainer Peter last week, and I was surprised to hear that January is not a busy month for him with new clients. I was slightly bemused by this, until he explained. His best time for picking up new clients is when his clients have tried and failed with their new gym membership to ‘get fit’ or ‘lose weight’ and realise they need more help than just good intentions and an expensive gym membership alone.

That’s the problem, good intentions are generally not enough. Let’s give you a good example of how good intentions are not enough. One of my biggest problems is email over flow. I am just lousy at clearing down and actioning my email. Even though I have written time and time again about how to manage your email (see how to permanently eliminate a cluttered inbox) I just can’t seem to crack the problem – despite my best intentions. As my best intentions are clearly not enough on their own, I’m currently trialling a piece of software called sanebox, combined with some coaching, which is helping me proactively manage my email.

If one of your resolutions is to kickstart your career, how about undertaking our career MOT? That way you will have the support of a professional and not just relying on good intentions alone!

One of the challenges of new year resolutions is that we often try to change too much too quickly. Let me explain further. If you’ve got into the bad habit of spending 12+ hours at work every day, then it is going to be incredibly unlikely that you will manage to quickly move to a more healthy 8-10 hr at work each day. It’s just too big a shift in one go.

[quote]If you have some meaty big resolutions you want to actually stick this year, then break them up into much smaller milestones and focus on achieving the small milestones.[/quote]

For example, let’s take the ‘work less hours’ resolution. The 1st milestone could be regularly leaving by 18:00 on a friday so you can be home to spend the evening with family, friends, partner etc. The next milestone could be choosing another night of the week to leave ‘on time’ so you can play a sport or meet a friend. (If you are interested in improving your work life balance then you may find 16 ways to improve your work life balance Part 1 & Part 2 valuable reading)

In tomorrow’s blog post, we will finish this blog post series and look at the remaining ways to actually keep your resolutions this year.

Author Credit

Heather Townsend helps professionals become the ‘Go To’ Expert. She is the author of the  award winning and best-selling book on business networking, the ‘FT Guide To Business Networking’ and the co-author of ‘How to make partner and still have a life’. Over the last decade she has worked with over 300 partners; coached, trained and mentored over 1000 professionals at every level of the UK’s most ambitious professional practices.