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New Year’s Resolutions Vs Habits

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Whether you work in a nursery or run one, you’ll be an expert in planning.

The children you look after day in, day out, require you to pay close attention to what they get up to. By observing their development, you can create potential goals for them to work towards.

So why is it that we find it so difficult to apply the same healthy progress review to our own development? 

Around 80% of New Year’s resolutions fail, but it doesn’t have to be that way. Harness this hopeful time of year and read on for how to make the most of your New Year’s resolutions in 2023.

Why Do New Year’s Resolutions Fail? 

Studies show that by the end of the year, a mere 8% of us have stuck to the goals we set for ourselves. And if you’ve set resolutions before, as many of us have, you’ll know how hard it is!

Let’s take a look at some of the common reasons resolutions fail.

Too Many Goals

We all know that juggling too many balls can lead to dropping some, so don’t let that happen with the goals you set for the coming year.

Succumbing to the excitement of a fresh start can lead us to try and make too many changes.  This means we find it impossible to focus, and we lose sight of our goals quickly, making us feel like a failure when it gets too hard to keep track. 

Boring Resolutions

If your goals are easily achievable, they don’t offer you enough excitement or challenge – and you’ll likely decide not to bother sticking to them. Where’s the fun in that?!

Resolutions that present a more difficult task, one that you need to plan and work towards, will push you to develop in ways that boring goals don’t. 

Impossible Isn’t Achievable

On the other end of the resolution spectrum are goals that are far too hard. 

Aiming too high into the realms of impossibility will leave you feeling disheartened, overwhelmed and in a negative mindset. By all means, think big, but start small.

Remember To Check-In 

New Year’s resolutions are given a bad rap for being a waste of time, but this is often because people don’t plan deadlines or check-in points throughout the year.

Failing to sense-check how your progress is going, or construct a plan or timeline for how you expect to go about your goal, means you can’t feel fantastic when you reach a milestone or catch yourself before you slip up.

Out Of Sight, Out Of Mind

Have you written your resolution out beautifully and stuck it on the fridge? Have you timetabled weekly or monthly you-time into the diary so you can sit down, be honest with yourself and reflect on how it’s going?

Not Value-Driven 

If your resolutions aren’t pinned to a strong value system, they aren’t going to stick. They need to have a why behind them.

Consider the flimsy statement ‘I will save more money this year’. You’re unlikely to hold true to this for the whole 365 days, are you? Now pin some meaning to it. Some heart. Why is saving money important to you? Do you want to go on holiday as a family for the first time in years? Does your partner deserve a treat? Maybe you simply want to get out of debt and feel more in control of your finances.

Approaching your resolutions in this way is more meaningful. And combining strong value-driven resolutions with a serious plan of how you’ll achieve them is your ticket to success.

New Year's Resolutions Vs Habits

How Does Changing Our Habits Help Us Achieve Our Goals? 

Our habits, or the way we tend to behave, usually sit at the heart of the changes we want to make. Not just that, but they’re often the blockers that cause us to stumble.

If you’re rubbish at saving the pennies, one of your resolutions will likely revolve around better money management. Doughnut lovers may gravitate to healthier eating, and anyone feeling unchallenged in life might seek to learn a new skill. 

You get the gist.

The thing is, without digging down into why you want to set those goals and working out the habits that sit underneath them, you can’t put plans into action to encourage a positive mindset and achieve success. 

What changes do you want to make next year? What habits and behaviours do you exhibit at the moment that stop you from living this way? 

Our habits, especially the ones we aren’t aware of, are arguably the biggest reason lots of New Year’s resolutions fail. 

If you want to make sustainable changes – ones that stick – then you need to look for habits you can change rather than setting New Year’s resolutions that will soon get forgotten. 

5 Ways To Make Positive Changes In 2023

If you don’t plant the seed, the flower won’t grow. Isn’t that a great saying? You’ve got to start somewhere for results to follow. Here are our five top tips for making change happen next year.

1 – Spend Time Thinking About What Matters To You

It’s pointless to aim for a resolution that has no soul. What do you actually want for yourself next year? 

Value-driven goals are more likely to stick. First, map out each area of your life that matters to you. Home, work, relationship, fitness, emotional… You name it. Then devote time to pondering each section. Try and come up with one or two goals for each, as well as a value statement to back it up.

Here’s an example. ‘I want to go to yoga once a week because my body feels great afterwards and I sleep better’.

2 – Review Your Goals Before Pinning Them Up

Check in with yourself or a trusted friend or partner before the clock chimes midnight.

Are your resolutions realistic? Sure, they can be ambitious, but the key is to avoid burnout and feelings of sheer disappointment, and that’s what will happen if you don’t meet (preposterous) targets. Anyone who knows you well should be able to be honest with you about what is both challenging and attainable.

3 – Show The World

Ok, so that’s not a direct order. Keep things private if you’d rather. But make your resolutions visible and exciting!

A poster with big bold type stuck to the fridge, images, vision boards… Hand-sewn bunting, if that’s your thing. Ensure you’ll be able to see your goals written down somewhere every single day to keep them front of mind.

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4 – Plan, Plan, Plan

To maintain the initial momentum of changing habits during a new orbit around the sun, you need to have a plan. 

Our lives are busy these days. Diary entries and reminders that beep at you until you take action are essential for many of us until our newly learned behaviours become second nature. Even then, it’s best not to become complacent.

5 – Measure And Review

You keep an eye on the development of children in your care, don’t you? Or, if you’re a manager, you regularly assess and review your staff.

This is no different. 

Measurable goals, like ‘I’ll make a home-cooked dinner four nights of the week’ rather than ‘We’ll eat fewer ready meals’, will enable you to better hold yourself to account and change tack if things aren’t working as well as they should be. 

And planning regular, weekly or even daily check-ins means you can celebrate small wins, encouraging you on in your development journey. 

So, what’s on your list? 

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MBK Group Can Help You Succeed

Are you struggling to define next year’s targets for your nursery? How about yourself, professionally? What do you want for yourself in 2023?

Here at MBK, we can help you identify your needs and plan effective, bespoke CPD or consultancy to facilitate the changes you want to see. We’re great at action planning too, and will support you right the way through your development journey.

Plant the seed today and contact us for support in planning and achieving your 2023 goals. 

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Tricia Wellings 1

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