New Year resolutions for kids seem like a great idea for teaching children how to work towards their goals. But according to U.S. News & World Report, a whopping 80 percent of New Year resolutions fail by the second week of February. Why do these New Year resolutions, developed with such good intentions, fail?
Many New Year resolutions are known as “outside-in”; you are working from the outside to change what is on the inside instead of the other way around. For example, you may be dieting to lose weight. You have not done anything to improve your chances of sustaining motivation throughout the year and achieving your resolution. Dieting alone will not bring you success — you must change your mindset first.
You must build self-discipline by powering through the discomfort of changing your mindset. Do not avoid facing your resistance to the change: acknowledge it and continue doing what you’re doing anyway. This is the only way for children and adults to adjust their mentality, and being able to overcome resistance is particularly crucial for the developing minds of children. Here are four tips on how resolutions for kids (and adults) can be successful:
1) Start Off Small
Do not attempt to tackle your overall resolution — for instance, losing forty pounds — with a giant goal like “lose five pounds each week.” The goal is unrealistic. When you are disappointed in not reaching this goal, you are more likely to be derailed from your overall New Year resolutions and not want to keep pursuing them. Instead, make a more modest, realistic goal such as “lose four pounds every two weeks.”
2) Build Trust in Yourself
Each success at achieving smaller goals will encourage you to continue working towards your larger resolution. You will start to believe in yourself. With a sense of self-confidence that is renewed each time you accomplish something, you will start to recognize that you can trust yourself to achieve what you set out to do.
3) Challenge Yourself
Do not become complacent in your weight-loss journey. Challenge yourself to try new things in order to discover what works best. Pack carrots in your lunch instead of potato chips. Join your classmates in a game of soccer during recess. Just because you are achieving your small goals doesn’t mean there isn’t room for improvement in your daily life.
4) Focus on the Positives
At the same time, do not get too caught up in how much work you still have to do. Adjust your mindset from thinking “I still have twenty pounds to lose!” to “I am halfway there!” This type of thinking will have you viewing the diet as a journey instead of a chore.
Statistics show that 20 percent of people will not have failed by the second week of February. Be a part of the statistics that show that it is possible to achieve your New Year resolutions!