If you’re like millions of folks across the globe, chances are you set a New Year’s resolution. And if you’re like most folks, you probably won’t keep it either. Some statistics say your chances are about 8%, which is not super inspiring. And most folks will say it’s because they’re lacking in willpower.
As a coach I see this quite a bit. A client will set themselves a task for homework and when the next session comes, they just haven’t found the time to do it. When the question why is asked, it’s not uncommon to hear things like “I know I should be doing it, but time just got away from me.”
The real reason you won’t keep your New Year’s resolution is that you’re lying to yourself (although you probably don’t even realize it). The word should is a dead giveaway. I should cut down on drinking, I should quit smoking, I should save more money, I should be nicer to my kids, I should be more organized.
We should all over ourselves all the time.
The bottom line is that we make time for the things that are really important. We don’t however make time for the shoulds. That’s why they are shoulds. They are often the things we THINK we need to do because maybe some important person said it was a good idea, or your mom said to do it when you were a kid or you heard about it on TV and thought it would be a good idea.
When I hear a lot of shoulds from a client I start asking questions about what’s really important. If you can connect a should to something that’s really important to you, you have a much better chance of actually doing it. Let me give you an example:
For a long time I thought I should go to boot camp in the morning. Despite buying the fancy shoes and designer work out top I never went however, even though I kept telling myself that it would be good for my health. Now I think about it differently. One of my most important goals is to be the best coach I can be for my clients. Boot camp is incredibly energizing and when I go I feel so much better the rest of the day. I’m more focused, have more energy for my clients and show up in the way I want to be seen by others. So yes boot camp is good for my health, but I really go because it makes me a better coach. See the difference? Once I made that connection I started going, and I haven’t stopped, despite the fact it’s been really cold lately in the mornings and I HATE the cold…
How’s it going with your resolution? If the answer is not very well, how could you reframe it to increase your commitment?