As humans we tend to work well with milestones – Christmas, birthdays, anniversaries – but the one that tends to be spoken of most is New Years. However more than 80% of people fail to achieve their new year’s resolution.
With a less celebrated milestone of the new financial year, there is no better time to address why people aren’t sticking to their resolutions and ways they can break the cycle.
Why do people fail more often than not? As humans, most of us are terrible at deferring gratification.
In the modern age of technology, smartphones, Uber and Deliveroo, we hardly ever have to wait for anything.
So when it comes to committing to a medium or long-term objective, we lack the experience to know how to stick the course.
So what can we do to defend ourselves from ourselves? Here are five simple and actionable tips you can start implementing to have more success with your goals.
1. Define the destination
You need to be crystal clear on what you want in life and spend the time to paint the picture around the goal.
What will it cost, where is it, who with, when will you get there?
These are all important questions to help you visualise what you are deferring gratification for.
2. Align with your purpose
Given we are all so busy, we never spend enough time asking ourselves “why”.
Unless we can rationalise or self-assess the reasons why we want something, how are we supposed to prioritise it?
Spend the time asking yourself why you want something and how significant it is in the greater context of your life. If something is important enough to you, you will do what it takes to get there.
3. Understand the language of money
As Bill Gates once said, “People overestimate what they can do in a year and underestimate what they can do in 10.”
This leads most people to have unrealistic expectations around their goals and, may lead them to make misguided decisions which can do more harm than good.
Learn about what it will take to achieve your goals, set realistic expectations and ensure you seek external input to validate your plans.