Are You “Shoulding” on Yourself? Why Resolutions Don’t Work

Woman with Light bulbYou know you’re supposed to make your New Year’s Resolutions now. But think back, how often do you actually stick to those resolutions? Why not?

Are you “Shoulding” on Yourself?

It could be that you are making resolutions that you think you “Should” make, not the ones you truly “Want” to make.

That “should” thing can really get you tangled up because it’s not coming from your heart, it’s coming from a sense of guilt, obligation, fear, wanting to fit in, societal pressure… fill in the blanks.

If the changes you want to make come from outside of you, it’s no wonder that they don’t stick. They are just another example of how we “try to do the right thing” but it may not be “your right thing”. It may be that it conflicts with something else you want.

Why giving up something doesn’t work

Are your resolutions based on giving up something vs embracing and experiencing a more fulfilling life?

Example: I want to lose 20 pounds vs I want to truly enjoy good healthy food and my life.
When there is a conflict like that which one do you think is going to win?

Example 2: I want to double my income vs I want to spend time doing what I love and connecting with happy, paying customers

Which one of these is coming from a Should, and which is coming from a heart/soul desire? Would really going for the “should” deny the other? Is there a way to include both in your life and switch the “should” to a true heart/soul desire.

Change your perspective – embrace the benefits

Let’s look at losing weight. What are the potential benefits and how can that include enjoying good food and life?

  1. I will feel better 20 pounds lighter and have more energy – enjoy life more.
  2. I will enjoy learning to cook delicious, healthy food that would up my energy level – enjoy life more.
  3. I will look and feel great in my clothes – enjoy life more.
  4. I will feel better about myself – enjoy life more.
  5. I will get together with friends and share recipes and even cook together – enjoy life more.

You have changed the entire intent behind losing 20 pounds from one of denial and constriction to one which embraces and includes your intent to enjoy your life more. When your resolution comes from a deeper place of pleasure rather than pain, it’s much easier to stick to it, it’s about saying Yes to Life instead of No.

Don’t set yourself up for failure.

Write down a list of what you want to bring into your life and how you want to accomplish it

But be straight with yourself – will you really go to the gym for an hour every day? Why not start off with something a bit more manageable and then add to it when you reach the first goal. What if instead of going to the gym for an hour a day – you get an exercise bike that you can use at home? You can even mix it up day to day one day at the gym another at home.

Pay attention to your body’s reactions to your goals. If you suddenly feel tired, anxious, tense, then you may be making the wrong plans. Shift things until you start to feel excited or energized instead of feeling dread. When your body, mind, and spirit agree on a goal, it’s a lot easier to achieve.

Make a plan, but allow for flexibility.

Too often we set ourselves up for failure by asserting that if we don’t follow the plan perfectly we’ve failed. When we fail we tend to drop the whole thing. If you allow some flexibility, then you don’t tend to feel that sense of failure and it’s easier to just readjust and go back to it with a new intent the following day.

Say “Yes” to 2019 and yourself and truly enjoy your life

Add this gratitude practice to your resolutions and you’ll start to see some very positive changes.

Click here to read Do You Know What to Do for 5 Minutes to Change Your Life?




Leave a Reply