Friday 31 December 2010

Making New Year's Resolutions

Most of us enter the New Year resolved to change something about ourselves. We often make one big resolution that falls by the wayside a few weeks into January.

If you want to make New Year's resolutions that really work, here are a few suggestions that can help.
Ian Henderson, a coach and professional speaker, says that to make your resolutions stick you need to answer five questions.

1: What do you want?
This must be specific (measurable) and focused on what you want to do or have rather than what you don’t want or don’t have.

2: Why do you want it?
This is the biggest question and gets to your real motivation. You need a big why or your efforts will fail at the first test. Your why might be that to continue causes you so much pain that there really is no alternative. It may be that what you are looking to achieve is so powerful for you that you will do anything to get it. The bigger your why, the easier the how is. Without a big enough why, the how becomes difficult.

3: Does your goal fit in with who you are as a person?
To be successful it must connect with who you are as a person and what you strongly believe in. If it does not, you will find ways to sabotage your efforts to change and you will be making the same resolutions again next December 31.

4: How will you do it?
This is about taking committed action. The good news is that your actions don’t need to be revolutionary. Break a big goal into smaller, achievable targets. Lots of small successes built on each other can make a big change over time.

5: When will you do it by?
"As soon as possible" does not appear in any diary. Putting a date on your goal increases your focus.

Ian's system would work best if you have a big, specific resolution that you want to make.

Another way of keeping focused on your goal is to use something like medium Joanne Gregory's set of inspirational cards Ask and It Will Happen, which I reviewed recently.

Ask and It Will Happen is a set of 52 motivational cards designed to help you keep focus on what you wish for, with messages suggesting helpful ways of going about getting what you want.

The way it works is very simple. You make a wish, write it down, then draw a card to get a message about how to help your wish come true. Having drawn your card, you can slide it into a specially designed easel frame that forms the lid of the box the set comes in. You can then meditate on it or leave it where you can easily see it as a constant reminder.

The set of cards can work well with any wish, but could be particularly good with New Year's resolutions.

My own favourite way of making resolutions is to write down at least 10 things I want to do or achieve over the following year. This was recommended to me by an extremely accomplished friend a few years ago - she told me her list of resolutions often has as many as 50 different things on it.

The idea behind this is that with a lot of goals you have a good chance of achieving at least half of them by the end of the year. I find it works quite well. In 2009 I achieved five out of ten ambitions and in 2010 I managed to achieve seven out of ten.

Here are my ten resolutions for 2011:
1: Interview at least six people for A Bad Witch's Blog
2: Visit another six places with pagan or occult significance and write about them
3: Continue to read at least one book relating to paganism, magic or folklore each month
4: Write about mooncakes and at least three other magical or seasonal recipes
5: Learn more about astrology and write about it
6: Buy - or make - the perfect ritual robe
7: Walk a London ley line
8: Publish a complete ritual for the full moon on my blog
9: Run another competition on A Bad Witch's Blog
10: Make at least one improvement to A Bad Witch's Blog

If you make one big New Year's resolution or a list of 50, I wish you the very best of luck in achieving all you want in 2011.

You can contact Ian Henderson via email at or visit the website Ask and it will Happen (pictured above) is published by Cico Books.

Previous related posts:

1 comment:

James C. Wallace II said...

I would be very interested in what kind of blog you would put out regarding a full moon ritual. I also like the idea of mooncakes. Are they anything like Moonpies. I love Moonpies!
I'd also be curious to see what kind of robe you make. I think you'd like mine.