Make 2015 Your Best Year Ever

resolutions1Did you make any New Year’s Resolutions either personally or professionally?

Perhaps you want to reduce some personal debts, or lose weight, get healthier, hire a consultant, add another hygienist, increase your marketing budget to attract new patients, lower accounts receivables, add new technology or take more time off, ….. the list could most likely fill several pages!

So why do most resolutions fall apart before we see any success? I read several articles on this subject and here is a sampling of what I found.

Timothy Pychyl, a professor of psychology at Carleton University in Canada, says that resolutions are a form of “cultural procrastination,” an effort to reinvent oneself. People make resolutions as a way of motivating themselves, he says. Pychyl argues that people aren’t ready to change their habits, particularly bad habits, and that accounts for the high failure rate. Another reason, says Dr. Avya Sharma of the Canadian Obesity Network, is that people set unrealistic goals and expectations in their resolutions.

Another article said:

  • 25% of people abandon their resolutions after one week
  • 60% abandon them within 6 months
  • Only 5% of those who lose weight on a diet keep it off.  95% regain it!
  • Even after a heart attack, only 14% make any lasting changes in eating or exercise.

Resolutions may not work but Goal Setting does!

Dr. Gail Matthews, a psychology professor at Dominican University in California, did a study on goal-setting with 267 participants.  She found that you are 42% more likely to achieve your goals just by writing them down.  You are probably aware that most people don’t bother to write down their goals.  Instead, they drift through life aimlessly, wondering why their life lacks purpose and significance.  

Writing your goals down isn’t the magic end to it all.  It is the beginning.  A basic secret to accomplishing what matters most to you is committing your goals to writing. 

Here are 5 reasons why.  Written goals:

  1. Force you to clarify what you want
  2. Motivate you to take action
  3. Provide a filter for other opportunities
  4. Help you overcome resistance
  5. Enable you to see—and celebrate––your progress.I often hear teams say “nothing is ever accomplished from our team meetings, why have them? The same things are being discussed over and over…..month after month with little or no change.”If you want to make 2014 the best year your office has ever had—then decide what you want and write it down, then set some deadlines!If you want to accomplish more, you need to decide what “more” is for you and your team and create a plan.