Welcome to my first blog of 2017!
This is naturally the time for New Year's resolutions as we think about what we want to change as we look ahead to the new year. It is also a time of reflection about where we are in our lives and what we want to do to make life healthier and more enjoyable.
So, here are some psychological tips to increase the success of those New Year resolutions:
1. Make sure your goals are well formed and realistic - they must be specific and focused, achievable by you, positive and have a realistic plan. If neccessary, break them down into achievable steps so they are not too daunting. The more focused the better as having a raft of goals can be distracting.
2. Make sure you can visualise your goals and be able to see yourself achieving them - a day in the life of you at various stages of the year is a good way to do it as you can integrate many goals into the visualisation including most importantly being able to see yourself looking healthy.
3. Plot your progress - in other words make your goals measurable in some way so you can see how well you are doing. Have a checklist to show how life will be better once your goals are achieved. Maybe allow small rewards throughout the process for achievement along the way to maintain your motivation levels.
4. Spread the word - commit to your goals publicly, particularly to friends and family that will support you in a postive way.
5. Understand your triggers - This is important in terms of knowing what prompts behaviour you want to avoid - things that might sabotage your progress. This will help you eliminate and avoid such triggers whilst looking to create new ones to support new habits and behaviours.
Persistance is key to success, a recent study of 5000 people who made resolutions by Prof Richard Wiseman of Hertfordshire University, found that it was those with a 'fatalistic attitude' that were least likely to succeed.
He advises it's more than likely that old habits will creep back in sometimes, so expect this and see those occasions as temporary set-backs and not a reason to give up all together. Get back on track straight away and put the off off blip behind you.
Alot of people ask me if January is my busiest month because of New Year's resolutions, suprisingly it isn't as people usually use willpower with their goals first, however people often seek help late January/ early February as this is the time they require more professional help and support.
I have alot of clients that use the New Year to re-assess their goals and have them hypnotically programmed at a subconscious level. I run programmes for clients to help them both set their goals in a well formed way and hypnotically programme them in. If this is something you might be interested in please call or e mail.
Alternatively, alot of clients use the New Year as an opportunity to learn how to run their minds towards achieving their goals. I run a one to one NLP (Neuro-Linguistic Programming) course that is specifically aimed at clients who want to move forward via a training rather than therapy route. Full details are on this website.
John Plester is the Principal Tutor for the East Anglian Institute of Hypnotherapy and leading consultant at Norwich Hypnotherapy Practice.