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Why Your New Year’s Resolutions Are Probably Not Going to Work

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Why Your New Year's Resolutions Are Probably Not Going to Work

Well, it’s been a week or so since you probably made promises to yourself about making some real and useful changes to either your habits, your business, or your mindset.

How are those promises working out for you?

Data point from article Why Your New Year's Resolutions Are Probably Not Going to Work

Worst pep talk ever…right?

Maybe…however

We want you to succeed, we really do, so I thought I would give you a little peek behind the curtain and show you why your New Year resolutions are probably not going to work…and more importantly, what you can do about it, to make it much more likely that you become one of the 15% who keep the promises you make yourself.

The Root Causes of Failure

It all starts like this…

Every year a kind of collective madness sweeps across the world persuading us with tantalising whispers that ….

Ghost of future you promising that this year your resolutions will work

And, like the positive, hopeful humans we are, we suck it all in and start to buy in and get all optimistic and shit.

Around New Year we start compiling a list of all the wildly valuable changes we are going to make…how different all the things are going to be for us…how different WE are going to be.

This time we will definitely succeed…

Because all the hard stuff is going to be done by an ideal, super competent, super motivated, future you…who has somehow managed to shake off current you’s scrolling/junk food/Pornhub addiction and will glide through 2024 swanlike in monk-mode.

Now I don’t want to be a dick about it (mostly) – but you have been present during every January in your life…and has that version of yourself EVER showed up and taken care of their side of the bargain?

Nope – right!

New Year New You is a trap. 

Not only does it not work…due to falling foul of a cognitive bias called ‘Hyperbolic Discounting’, its also the wrong way to look at the future…and more importantly future you. Article on that right here

Here are the facts.

Current You is Pretty Fucking Awesome – so why would you change?

You have done amazing things, fixed problems, overcome challenges, been brave, been a massive chicken …and did it anyway, made new friends, got rid of old frienemies…all kinds of marvellous and breathtaking stuff.

Sooooo…rather than trying to re-invent yourself, maybe re-invest yourself – well the bits of you, that you absolutely know you that can depend on, in new areas of your life, so you can get better, tingly, more finger-licking results

ALSO – in a very real sense, you actually like yourself, or most of you anyway – so making wholesale sweeping changes is going to drown you in a tsunami of well-meaning but self-defeating cognitive dissonance.

The TL:DR of the rest of this article is “catch yourself doing amazing things – and do more of it, every day”

…or as the rightful Queen of Earth Dolly Parton puts it…

Dolly parton quote from article about Why Your New Year's Resolutions Are Probably Not Going to Work

Why Resolutions Usually Don’t Work

Now…

There are ALL kinds of articles/tips/straight up lies, about making your resolutions work – and if you are into vanilla stuff, then you should definitely get sucked into the Google rabbit hole of bland but well-meaning advice. (all of which has probably been written by the same AI engine – enjoy!)

But I like to write things you things that you probably won’t find anywhere else.

So – The Reasons Your Resolutions Probably Won’t Work:

  1. Resolutions are usually framed as outcomes – so its much easier to notice when you fuck up.
  2. Resolutions are usually MASSIVELY UNREALISTIC – big stuff is HARD. Better to do small stuff over and over.
  3. Resolutions are usually what we think we SHOULD have/do – rather than what actually fills us with joy/meaning/oxytocin
  4. Resolutions are usually framed as PASS/FAIL – however, we only EVER fail in life when we quit. A single ATOM of progress is better than none at all.
  5. Resolutions are usually additional – You have to let go of old stuff, to make space in your life for new stuff.

How to Make 2024 Actually Fucking Rock

0.1% Change Every Day.

If you want to change things in your life/business/cult you need to take tiny steps, but you need to take them every day.  Einstein famously observed that compound interest is one of the most powerful forces in the universe.

Going to the gym once is unlikely to ever hulk you out, however doing 20 minutes of fast walking every day for a year will make colossal changes to almost everything in your life.

Committing to small consistent stuff both makes the maintaining process easier AND reduces the “I fucked up” – getting back on the horse – adoption curve.

Gerry Seinfeld attributes a lot of his massive success to committing to writing for 30 minutes per day and then simply…

So for the first month,  only commit to three new specific actions which take less than 30 minutes in total.
…then don’t break the streak.

For example..

  • Walk 10 mins
  • Read 3 pages of a book
  • Meditate for 10 mins
  • Send 3 sales emails a day

Anything simple and easy to repeat…Then make sure you…

Track your Successes

Trying to remember your motivation is incredibly difficult…especially when we are overwhelmed, or busy, or just are just plain looking for a way out of doing something hard.

Having a visible record of your activities to date, will help you to not break your streak.

Make it ALL visible…a list of your actions, your progress and every iteration of them ticked off so you can see both your progress and your provable commitment to yourself on previous days.

I may sound like a heretic, but your phone is not the place for this kind of thing, try a big ass chart on the wall with brightly coloured checks on the completed tasks.

James clear quote from article Why Your New Year's Resolutions Are Probably Not Going to Work

Get a Squad

We are all slippery pricks when it comes to letting ourselves off with the difficult challenge of changing things about ourselves.

Many of us keep our resolutions to ourselves, and that’s a recipe for failure. Without someone to hold us accountable, it’s too damned easy to let our resolutions slide.

Letting ourselves off the hook is the main reason why the % of failure to stick with your promises to yourself is so high.

Ubuntu quote from article Why Your New Year's Resolutions Are Probably Not Going to Work

So, make your activities public, get an accountability buddy – someone who will not let you off the hook when you feel like being slippery

Check in every week, or every day if you really want to get firm on yourself.

If you don’t have that for your business, check out our KiNsiders community

A group of super supportive business mates, regular virtual workshops, personal guidance and a cheering section like you wouldn’t believe!

Always on your side, always fresh content and always keeping you accountable to the best possible you.

People we worked with in 2023 successfully designed and launched new products, won business awards and increased their income significantly.

So, do yourself a favour and give yourself the best possible chance of making 2024 a year you want to have…get some help.

Thanks for reading, as ever, if youhave any feedback or would like to talk anything over, drop us a line via our CONTACT FORM

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