Why do New Year Resolutions Fail? 

January 10, 2023

New Year's resolutions have a long history dating back to ancient Babylon. The Babylonians made promises to their gods at the start of each year that they would return borrowed objects and pay their debts.

The ancient Romans also made New Year's resolutions, but their focus was on self-improvement, such as exercising more and eating healthier diet. In modern times, New Year's resolutions have become a way for people to reflect on the past year and make positive changes in their lives in the year ahead. Many people see the start of a new year as a time to set new goals and make positive changes in their lives.

Five common reasons why New Year's resolutions often fail

Unrealistic goals

Setting goals that are too difficult or unrealistic can set you up for failure from the start.

For example, if your resolution is to run a marathon, but you have never run before and only have a few weeks to train, this goal is likely unrealistic and may be too difficult to achieve.

Lack of a plan

Without a clear plan for how to achieve your goals, it can be difficult to stay on track and make progress.

If your resolution is to save more money, but you don't have a budget or a plan for how to cut expenses and increase income, it will be difficult to make progress towards this goal. 

Lack of commitment

It takes dedication and hard work to see a resolution through to the end. Without the necessary level of commitment, it's easy to get sidetracked or lose motivation. Let's say you want to eat a healthier diet, but you don't follow through on your plan to eat more fruits and vegetables and instead continue to eat fast food regularly, you are not showing the necessary level of commitment to achieve this goal.

Lack of support

Having the support of friends and family can be helpful in staying on track with your resolutions. Without this support, it can be easier to fall back into old habits.

For example, if your resolution is to quit smoking and you try to do it on your own without the support of friends or a support group, you may find it more difficult to succeed.

Life gets in the way

Unexpected events or challenges can arise that make it difficult to follow through on your resolutions. If your resolution is to exercise more, but you get injured or become too busy with work and other responsibilities, it may be difficult to follow through on this goal. It's important to be flexible and adjust your goals as needed in these cases.

How to stick to your resolutions quick three tips 

Here are three quick tips for sticking to your New Year's resolutions:

Make specific, achievable goals

Instead of resolving to "lose weight," set a specific goal such as "lose 5 pounds in the next month." This will give you a clear target to work towards and make it easier to track your progress.

Create a plan

Make a plan for how you will achieve your goals, including specific steps you will take and any resources you will need. This will help you stay on track and make progress towards your resolutions.

Seek support

Share your resolutions with friends and family, or consider joining a support group or working with a coach or mentor. Having the support of others can help you stay motivated and accountable.

An interesting read 

Celebrated data scientist Cassie Kozyrkov wrote an interesting article about new year's resolutions and why they fail. 

This article discusses the common failure of New Year's resolutions and suggests that instead of relying on willpower, people should focus on learning from their mistakes and creating a failure action plan. The article advises making specific, achievable goals and building a plan for adapting one's approach if they fall short of their target. It also suggests that it is crucial to have a plan for handling mistakes and adjusting goals in light of new information, as well as seeking support from others. The article emphasizes the importance of focusing on one's learning rate rather than their winning rate and suggests that any improvement is better than none at all.

All in Motion is wishing you a very Happy New Year and may all your resolutions come true.