3 Reasons Your New Years Resolution Didn't Stick, & What to Do Instead

3 Reasons Your New Years Resolution Didn't Stick & What to Do Instead

Did you do it again?! 

Did you start off January 1st all full of motivation, plans, expectations, and excitement about how THIS TIME WILL BE DIFFERENT?! You made that resolution in good faith, with good intentions to better yourself and improve your life, but like 85% of people who make resolutions, it all fizzled out by February.   If your resolutions didn't stick, you're far from alone, but there's 3 really big reasons for it that you probably haven't considered before:
1. You chose the wrong thing for your resolution
2. You relied too much on motivation
3. You tried to change what you're doing without changing what you're thinking

 In todays episode I'm going to break down these three issues and how you should approach each of them differently for better success.  Then I'm going to tell you how I do resolutions so that I always stick to them.  
This episode is about MUCH MORE than just resolutions, it's a whole framework for setting and accomplishing literally ANY GOAL at ANY TIME.  

Also CLICK HERE for my FREE quarterly goal setting check in and assessment worksheet that I personally use to keep myself on track!  I know you'll find it super helpful!  Post in the community and share the goal you're working on!

If anything in this episode resonated with you, I'd LOVE to hear about it! Send me a DM on Instagram or post a screenshot of this episode in your stories and tag me @tarafaulmann! And join the conversation in our FREE No Nonsense Wellness Community!

Full transcription available at the bottom of this post

Show Notes: 

Links Mentioned in Show
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If you struggle with yo-yo dieting then you know how hard it is to make any real lasting change.  Unfortunately most women get stuck in the belief that being on a diet is the only way to lose weight and get healthy, and when they inevitably fail they’ve destroyed their self esteem, destroyed their relationship with food, and get stuck in a guilt/shame spiral that starts the whole process over again.  
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That’s why I created the Healthy Mind, Healthy Body Programto teach you how to make a real, lasting transformation in your Mind AND Body.   


Full Transcript: 
Welcome back. Today we're talking about New Year's resolutions, and specifically why you may not have stuck to your New Year's resolutions. Why you may ask, are we talking about New Year's resolutions in mid February? Well, it's because surveys show that 80 to 85% of people have abandon their resolutions by February. Surveys also show that the top three resolutions that people make are to lose weight, exercise more and eat healthier, kind of the focus of what we're talking about here, isn't it? Have you made any of those resolutions before? Have you made resolutions this year, about your health, about exercising about losing weight, most likely you have and most likely you didn't stick to them. And most likely you've made these resolutions before last year, and maybe the year before. There's three major reasons that we don't stick to our resolutions. And that's what I want to go over today. I'm also going to tell you how I do resolutions, and give you the full proof way to stick to your resolutions. No matter what. You're ready. Let's go.

Welcome back to the no nonsense wellness podcast, the place for women who are trying to do all the things and stay healthy, sane and actually enjoy life in the process. Hey, I'm Tara, a trained therapist, a life coach, a nutrition coach and a fitness instructor. And I'm on a mission to help you take back control of your mind health and life. Each week, I'll be cutting through the nonsense and getting real with you. I'll bring you the insight and information you need to take control of your weight and health. Find food freedom, and finally break free from the thoughts that are sabotaging you and holding you back. You, my friend are powerful, and the world needs you to start showing up in a bigger way. It's time to get unstuck and start moving forward. So let's pop in those earbuds, tie up those shoes. Let's walk and talk.

Okay, can we just be honest, why are New Year's resolutions even a thing anyways? Like, why do we keep putting ourselves through this? If 85% of us aren't even sticking to them? Doesn't that mean that there's just the idea of New Year's resolutions is like fundamentally flawed. Like, why do we keep doing this? Personally, I think it's a marketing scheme, right? Like the women that I actually talked to in real life. Many of them are like, Nah, I didn't do resolutions this year. But if you look at social media or media in general, all you see is New Year New you resolutions, lose weight, this training, that training, joined this thing by this thing, right? I think it's just really turned into a marketing scheme. And it's not really to our benefit. Because if it really was if New Year's resolutions really worked and worked to our benefit, 85% of us wouldn't quit before February. Okay. And I'm going to get off my soapbox, because I was a little bit of a rant. But honestly, like, I just don't really see the point, we keep putting these arbitrary dates like, this is the day I'm going to change. I'm going to start Monday, I'm going to start January 1, I'm going to start next month, I'm going to start after vacation, like stop with the arbitrary dates for things. It doesn't make any sense. And all it does is keep us stuck and keep us failing. That's not why we're here. Okay, so let's talk about why if you made a resolution, why it probably failed, and what you can do instead. So I'm going to give you three reasons. And then I'm going to tell you how I approach new year's resolutions. 

Okay, reason number one, you picked the wrong thing. The thing you picked to do for your resolution was not sustainable. It's not something that fits into your life. It's not conducive to your lifestyle. The thing you picked is going to be a real hard to stick to long term. It was too much too soon, it was too big of a change. Most of us the reason our New Year's resolutions didn't stick is because we picked the wrong thing. We get super excited. In January, about making a change. This is the year I'm going to do it. And we think that we can just change everything like we have like this, we all sudden think that we have this January superpower, it's going to be miraculous. January 1 Everything's new and I can do it this time. But nothing's changed. Nothing has changed. There literally is no logical reason why we should think just because it's January 1, all sudden this thing we want to do is going to work this time. It doesn't make any sense. Okay, so here we are. We pick this thing like I'm going to lose 20 pounds. I'm going keto. I'm doing whole 30 I'm getting a gym membership. I'm going 60 is a week I'm doing it this time, we try to make this quantum leap in our life from where we are to where we want to be. That never works, it just isn't going to stick. The thing that sticks is small things, we always are so prone to choosing this huge thing that is such a total departure from the way that we are living our life right now, that there just truly is no way that we are going to stick to it long term, we are dooming ourselves to failure. Before we even get started. What we need to do instead is to keep it small, you cannot go from A to Z, you have to go from A to B to C to D, there is a process. If you want to make long term change that sticks, you have to go through the process. There are no shortcuts. Everyone on January 1 is trying to sell you a shortcut. And it works because we want shortcuts. We want to get there faster. We want to go from A to Z, but I am telling you for the 1,000th time and I'll keep telling you every single year on January 1, shortcuts aren't gonna work. It's not gonna last, you know this from experience, because you've been on diets before that didn't work. You've made resolutions that didn't work. The reason is because you tried to do too much, you've got to keep it small. So when we make smaller goals, smaller actions, smaller changes, those small things add up to the big things. That's how change is made. 

So here's what happens in your brain when you choose this big huge thing. Like, uh, starting Monday, I'm going keto. I'm like no carbs, no, nothing. I'm eating like bread and cheese. I don't know, keto, whatever, whatever you do when you eat keto. But it's not how you eat right now, right now you love pasta and ice cream. On Monday, all of a sudden, you're supposed to not love pasta and ice cream and just not want it ever again. Again, that's not how your brain or body works. But I digress. What's happening in your brain then as you are like, your brain is getting exhausted all day long. Because it's like eat this, don't eat that eat this, don't eat that you're good. You can do it, you're good. You can do it. Try pep talk you through this thing that sucks that you hate and you feel terrible. And by the end of the day, you're like I did so good today, I deserve a treat her by the end of the week, you're like, Oh, I did so good this week, I deserve a cheat meal, I deserve a cheat day. And then that cheat quote unquote, because I do not believe in cheating. If you have to cheat on your diet, then your diet is bullshit. Again, I digress. And if you that now the cheat day is going to start in turn into a cheat two days and then a cheat three days, right. And pretty soon we're just like eff it. And it's not even worth it right and we give up, your brain does not want to operate like that your brain does not want to be exhausted all day thinking about this goal that you are trying to accomplish. That is terrible that it doesn't want to it wants to just keep doing what you were doing. It was fine. Your brains like I was fine right here. The reason this is happening is because you made too big of a change all at once you have to keep the change small. And when you're deciding what you want those changes to be, I want you to think about making them behavior based changes and not outcome based changes. So what I mean by that is an outcome based change would be I want to lose 20 pounds, okay? That's your outcome. That's the outcome that you want. Your brain doesn't operate on outcome based change your brain operates on behavioral change, a behavioral change would be in order to lose 20 pounds. One thing I could do right now is get 10,000 steps a day. Your brains like okay, each day, I can focus on that 10,000 steps, I can do this, I can handle that one thing. When you say I want to lose 20 pounds, that's my resolution. Okay, that's too many things for your brain to handle. It gets overwhelmed, it gets exhausted and it wants to go right back to the status quo. So when you say on Monday, all of a sudden, I'm not eating any carbs or ice cream or pasta or any of the things that I love ever again, because now I'm keto. Your brains like

No, no, ma'am. That's not how this works. Instead of that outcome based goal, like I am now keto, a behavior based school would be okay, I'm cutting out the ice cream at night. And I'm going to do that for a while until that becomes a habit that I can stick to that I feel okay about. Okay, what's the next thing I could do that moves me towards being more keto? Okay, well, now I can cut out the two slices of bread on my sandwich. I'll have a salad instead of a standard sandwich. Okay, so now I do that for a while until that feels really good and doable and manageable. Do you see the difference? Instead of going all or nothing on this day, you know, make or break it easing into the change, your brain will not fight you, when you ease on in your brain will fight you when you try to make all the change all at once. Okay, so keep it small. Well, that was all just point number one. Okay? Reason number two that your resolutions did not stick is that you were relying on motivation. When you decided to make that resolution, you're like totally excited about it, it's working this time I'm doing it, I'm really committing this time. And the first

few weeks, if it lasts that long, you are just running on pure grit and determination. Like it doesn't matter what's happening in your brain like you are powering through this, you are going to do it this time. If I just get over the hump, we'd like to say that a lot, right? I just got to get over the hump. You got to get over the hard part. And then it gets easy. No, it doesn't. Because you tried to do too much at once. So when you're relying on motivation, the problem with motivation is that it does not last and you know that this is true. Even though you were super motivated at the beginning, after probably not very long, it's just gonna start to feel tedious and boring. And it's gonna start feeling like it sucks. You start running out of gas, your motivation is always going to wane as time goes on. And pretty soon, you're just not going to want to do it anymore, you're going to start justifying that it's dumb, and it's not working, and it's pointless. And why am I even doing this? Why did I even start this? Why did I think it was a good idea in the first place? And then you're gonna quit? You cannot rely on motivation. That is why from point one, we talked about behavior change, you can change behavior without motivation. Mm hmm. Yes, that is true, you can, if my if all I'm trying to do is create a habit of walking 10,000 steps a day, I don't have to be super motivated to do that. I can just do that. Right? If I am trying to absolutely eat never again, any cookies, or pasta, or carbs, or popcorn or any of the things that I like to eat? Well, that motivation is going to wane real fast. And you're going to start to think that this sucks, and I don't want to do it anymore, and you're going to quit. 

The other thing you have to think about motivation is that you need to tie whatever change you want to make to a bigger purpose. And a bigger why? If your goal is you want to lose 20 pounds, okay? Why do you want to lose 20 pounds? Like what's in it for you? If you're going to put me through this, your brain says, we're going to really do this, why are we doing it, you need to have a really good reason, or else I'm going to fight you. That's your brain talking, your brain doesn't want to change. Your brain wants to say the same. It likes status quo. And so if you're going to make a change, it needs to have a really good reason why it needs to know what is the bigger why you cannot be I want to lose 20 pounds. So I look cute in my shorts. Well, why do you want to look cute in your shorts? Why is that important? How will that make you feel? What does that mean about you? What does it say about you as a person? Is it tied to your worth? Is your worth tied to your body? And how your body looks? Is it about more than weight? Is it about how you want to function instead? Like what is it really about? Maybe it's so that you can stay young and vibrant. Maybe it's because you want to be healthy. Maybe it's because you want your cholesterol to come down. Maybe it's because you want to get off your diabetes medication, you need a bigger reason than just I want to lose 20 pounds, or I want to look cute, or I want to put my wedding dress on even that's not enough. You need to have a purpose for making this change that is logical and understandable that your brain can be like, Yeah, I do want that. Like I really want that. There could be tons of reasons everyone will have different reasons. But you need to spend some time digging in a little deeper and then a little deeper to find the real reason that you want to achieve the goal that you want to achieve. That makes sense. Okay. 

And the third major reason that you did not accomplish your New Year's resolution is that you didn't change your thinking. Now, we've been sort of alluding to this all the way through this podcast so far, the idea that you need to change your thinking. But this is probably the biggest reason why we fail at any goal, not just New Year's resolutions. But really any goal. It's the biggest reason we fail and it's also the least addressed reason that we fail. I mean, I literally created an entire coaching program around this idea of having to change our thinking so that we can change our minds that we can change our bodies that we can change our functioning. If you have decided that you're making this big change for your New Year's resolution, but your thoughts are still thinking things like it'll never work. You've done this before. This sucks. I hate this. This is hard. This is terrible. I don't know if this is the right thing to do this girl on Instagram now. I thought it was the right thing. But now she says it's not the right thing and I should be doing this. Instead you're going to start looking for other things, right? So and so is doing this, oh, I didn't try that. So instead of doing that, instead of what I'm doing, you're going to start justifying not sticking to the thing you're trying to stick to, because you haven't changed your thinking, when our thinking when our brain is constantly fighting us, and our thinking is still like, this isn't gonna work. Why are we doing this? This is terrible. This is sec, we shouldn't be shocked that we don't stick to it. Right? That makes sense that we wouldn't stick to it, because our thinking hasn't changed. So you really need to check in on your thoughts about the process of what you're doing, and about yourself in the process of what you're trying to do. If your thoughts are a failure, then your emotions, your actions, and your results will follow suit. So here's what you're going to do instead, here's how you're going to change this for yourself. 

First, you have to understand what your thoughts are, you have to start paying attention. And really understanding what thoughts you're having they're sabotaging you on your way to accomplishing what you wanted to accomplish, then you have to decide how the you who accomplished this thing, this goal that you set would be thinking and feeling so not just the you who has lost 20 pounds. Remember, because we're not talking about just the outcome goal, we want to really focus on those process goals, those behavior goals, those small steps along the way to the big one to the 20 pounds. So what you're thinking about is, what would the thoughts that you who just completed 10,000 steps today? What is she thinking? What are her thoughts? Does that make sense? So instead of like, what does keto me think, right, me who's fully on keto, and I'm doing so good at it. Nope. What does you who gave up ice cream every night, consistently for a week? What does she think? What are her thoughts? It's going to be very different. Because here's the thing, if you're if you haven't this outcome goal, and you decided that you want to lose 20 pounds, every day that you wake up that you have not lost 20 pounds, your brain says, You suck, you're a failure. Right, you should quit. That's what's happening in your head. Every single day that you wake up and you haven't lost that 20 pounds, your brain tells you you suck, you should quit every single day that you did not go full keto, and you had a piece of bread or a cookie or god forbid, some popcorn, every single Sorry, I'm picking on Ketola. It's just like a thing for me. If you're keto, that's fine. I'm totally cool with you being keto, just using it as an example. Because for most people, it is a major change. And that's the point that I'm getting at Not that you should or should not do it. I just want to make that clear. Okay, so every day that you wake up, and you're like, Shit, I had popcorn yesterday, your brains like you suck, you're a failure, you should quit, right. But if I'm focusing on the thoughts that the me would have have, the goal I set out was to walk 10,000 steps a day, I walked 10,000 steps a day, because that's a manageable thing for me to do, then my thoughts are good job, you're in Beijing, look at you, you're sticking to it, you're actually doing it this time, you can set a goal and stick to it right? My thoughts are much different. And when my thoughts are those thoughts, I am much more likely to then do 10,000 steps the next day. And the next day. Do you see how this works? The you who ended the day successfully completing the action that you've set out to accomplish? Sounds a lot different than the you who again woke up and wasn't 20 pounds lighter. Does that make sense? 

So you need to understand what your thoughts are. You need to understand what the your thoughts what you want them to be in order to make accomplishing that goal, that behavior step more conducive. And then you also need to do this if you don't complete the thing, right. Okay. I did not do 10,000 steps today. Now what? Now you need to check in with yourself, you need to understand why. What were the thoughts that got in your way. And remember, I am not talking about obstacles like oh, it was busy. Ooh, my kids had this and that, oh, I had to make dinner lead or whatever. Excuse Excuse Excuse. I don't care about your excuses. And your brain doesn't either. What I want to know is what are your thoughts about those excuses? Why are you making those excuses? What are the thoughts that are causing you to need to make those excuses? Do you see where I'm going here? It's not about the excuses. I don't care. Your brain doesn't either. And your 10,000 steps don't either. It's about what are your thoughts about your excuses, that kept you from doing the thing. Here's an example. You had a busy day. Okay, we all have busy days. You had a busy day. And your thought was, oh, I'm just I'm too tired. Oh, I only have 15 minutes between getting home and picking up the kids. It's not enough time. Or you could have told yourself. Okay, I have 15 minutes between when I get home and pick up the kids. I could probably get in about eight minutes of walking in that 15 minutes before I have to go sit in the car again and pick up the kids. I can do that. Do you see the difference in thoughts? Do you see how there would be a different outcome between those two different fields of thought? Okay, it's not about the obstacle. It's about your thoughts about the obstacle. Have I been clear? I think I did. So those are the three main reasons that you probably failed on your New Year's resolutions and how to change them, you chose the wrong thing. You focus too much on motivation relied too much on motivation, and you didn't change your thinking. 

And now I'm going to tell you what I do instead, the most surefire way to not fail at accomplishing your New Year's resolutions, is to not make two year's resolutions. Okay, don't turn off the podcast, I'm being serious, there's more. But honestly, if we keep not following through on them, if they keep not working, stop doing it. Stop making resolutions. Truly, I have not made a resolution in years, years and years, I can't even remember the last time I tried to make a New Year's resolution. Here's what I do instead. First thing I do, I understand myself, I know myself, January is not a good time for me to try to make life changes, hey, it is not a good time for me to try to overhaul anything about myself. In January, I'm tired. I'm generally in hibernation mode, like I just want to just chill and kind of stay inside, I'm very kind of reflective and quiet. I'm just coming off the holidays that are stressful, like good stress, bad stress, but stressful. Nonetheless, January is not a good time for me mentally to try and make huge changes. It's just not I know that about myself. So recognize that about you, I bet that might be the same for you, January might not be a great time for you to try and make major changes. If it's not recognize that and work with it, stop trying to work against yourself just be cut to fit into this box of like January one, I have to do this. first of the month, Monday, whatever, all these arbitrary start times, you need to recognize what works for you and work with that. Okay, so I don't change in January. That's the point of that. The second thing I do in January is I use that time to rest and reflect and regroup and dream and plan and strategize and learn. I just sort of reflect during this month, I take time to assess my last year, what worked, what didn't work, what would I like to keep?

What do I want to get rid of? What things do I want to keep doing? What things do I want to stop doing? What things do I want to do more of? I really reflect on how my last year went? What worked, what didn't? And how I want to take that into my new year, what am I bringing with me? And what am I leaving behind? I started doing this when I was in full time network marketing. And I was taught this by some other mentors in the business. And it was really useful to me. And I was like, honestly, kind of like, shocked at myself like, Wow, I can't believe I've actually never done this before. And it was really useful for my business. And then I was like, I should really do this for my whole life. This is crazy. Why do I not do this. And it's been super great. And I actually now kind of go through this process quarterly, this kind of check in process quarterly with myself just to see where I'm at and where I want to go. So the third thing I do is after I kind of assess my life and where I'm at and where I want to go, I choose just a few things that I'd like to accomplish. So not on the whole year necessarily. I just go I generally go quarter by quarter, like what do I want to work on this quarter. And I choose those couple areas of my life. And then I start making plans. I seek out learning if I need learning. So like, for the goals for my business, I needed to learn a few things about marketing and things like that things I don't know. So I started seeking out those things, I start to develop the steps that I need to get where I want to go, and I make a plan. And so when I say develop those steps, what I'm doing is I say like, okay, in the next 90 days, in these three areas of my life, I want to accomplish these three things, what are the steps that I need to get there, and then I start breaking it down by the steps. So this goal that I want to achieve by this quarter is going to take I need to do these five things. If I do these five things consistently, I will have I will get there. And then I break down those five things. How long do I need to do them? How long will I need to do them until they're habit until I'm just doing them regularly. That's how you break down the goal. I mean, it's it's that simple and that complex all at the same time. And then the fourth thing I do is I track so I just make sure I'm on track with those things. Right. 

So if I want to, in the next 90 days lose 10 pounds. I know that two of the biggest things I could do to lose 10 pounds in the next 90 days is walk 10,000 steps a day. and eat a salad every day. Those are the two things that I'm going to pick. So I'm going to pick one and stick with it for a while I'm gonna walk 10,000 steps I'm gonna do every day until I get it consistently. And then I'm going to add in the salad. Now I'm doing 10,000 steps and a salad every day. And now between these two things, if I do them consistently, for 90 days, I will lose 10 pounds. BINGO, BINGO, right. That's how this works. So you have to start breaking things down. And so this is my process, instead of a New Year's resolution, I do these quarterly check ins. And I really break things down into manageable steps that I know that I can handle. Okay, I just gave you like the biggest gold training ever. I hope that you had a pencil to write that down with, definitely check out the show notes. What I've done for you is created some worksheets that go along with this, they're the worksheets that I use for this process. For myself, they're my quarterly check in worksheet, and I'm going to give that to you. The link for that is going to be in the show notes. If you are on the email list for this podcast, it will be in the email that you will get along when this podcast releases. And go there, click the link, get the forms. It's just a two pager, quarterly check in and you're going to fill that out for yourself. So if you failed on your New Year's resolutions, you can start again whenever you want to on that goal that you want to achieve. But we just need to do it in a slightly different way. And you can start now you can start later, you can start in the summer, I don't care when you start, grab those sheets, because they will be useful for you to use at any time in the future. That went a lot longer than I intended it to. But gosh, I had a really lot to say to you about setting goals. I hope that was super duper helpful. And I would love if you are not in our Facebook group. We just started a Facebook group for the podcast. So I would love to see if you want to share a behavioral stuff that you're working on in order to get to your big goal. I would love to see what those are. I'd love to coach you on the way I want to give you advice I want to hold your hand I want to help you out. So get into that group. It's in the email that I sent you with this podcast if you're on the email list and it's also in the show notes wherever you watch this show, just scroll down the show notes and click the link for the community group. Okay, I will see you over there until I talk to you next my friends

be well. 

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