Most of us make new year’s resolutions as part of a tradition.
And every year, most of us fail to meet these resolutions for many reasons.
As much as I hate to admit it, I’m not as successful as I want to be regarding new year’s resolutions.
So today, I will talk about why we often fail at keeping these new year’s resolutions.
Life, in general, is hard.
But everyone in senior care would agree that being in this industry is much harder than people think.
As caregivers, we also want to be better for our patients.
We want to be more patient, empathic, and skilled in caring for their needs.
At the same time, we want to ensure that our personal needs are met.
So we set goals and promises to ensure that we become a better version of ourselves.
However, it can be difficult, especially if you care for seniors with many limitations.
No matter how hard you try and how patient you get, eventually you lose your cool and go back to your old ways.
Then you beat yourself up because you know you could’ve done better.
I know, because this has been my story many times.
One thing is for sure. It’s not your fault. No matter how good your intentions are, we’re human, after all.
Some people make New Year’s resolutions as motivation and inspiration for the coming year.
The downtime between Christmas and New Year gives us ample time to reflect on the past year and set intentions for the year ahead.
It’s also a great time to identify priorities and find ways to make progress.
So why do we often fail to achieve our goals just a few weeks or months after we set them?
Here are the most common mistakes we make when setting goals for the new year.
Have you heard of the saying, ‘You become what you focus on”?
When we think about goals, we often think about what we want to change. And most times, we want to change what we don’t like in ourselves.
While it’s good to want to change for the better, it’s another thing to over analyze your flaws.
If you focus too much on your flaws, it will also negatively affect your self-image.
Goal-setting should be about improvement. So when you’re setting goals, make sure you’re also listing things you’re great at that you can easily continue.
Doing so will give you a fair list of your strengths and flaws. It will also give you more of a complete picture of who you are.
It easy for me to have an all-or-nothing attitude when it comes to achieving goals.
I tend to give it my all during initially, but one missed day or mistake and I become frustrated and often drop it all together.
That’s why you need to be forgiving of yourself, at least when it comes to taking action.
Things don’t always go as planned. And you will make mistakes along the way.
So it’s also essential to take things easy and make sustainable goals for you and your lifestyle.
Remember, it's a whole year ahead. The goal is not to sprint but to run a marathon.
Fear of failure is much more common than you think.
The truth is, no one wants to admit they failed. For most people, failure is admitting weakness and foolishness.
What we need to realize is that failure is as much a part of the process as learning and application.
Don’t worry too much if you don’t achieve your goals in the first few weeks. What matters is small consistent steps in the right direction.
Follow-through is the bane of any goal-setting exercise.
It’s not enough to just write down your goals. Finding ways to add accountability is needed as well.
This can come from keeping a journal and tracking the small consistent steps, or finding someone who can check in with you regularly to see how you are doing.
Measuring your processes and results helps you would know how to change and adjust.
For example, if your goal is better health, it’s to general to be able to follow through.
Choose something more specific that can be easily tracked and will lead to better health.
Maybe improved sleep, a routine exercise schedule, or better meal choices.
And if one day comes and you make a mistake, don’t fret.
Go back to your goals and find why you started them in the first place.
The biggest challenge for all of us is how to sustain the work needed to get to our goals.
Most of us think it’s the big things that make the most significant impact.
As caregivers and health professionals in senior care, we often think of how we could improve the services we provide.
However, we forget one most important thing: ourselves.
We could never give from an empty cup. That’s why it’s as essential for us to set goals for our self-care.
Whether it’s improving our craft through learning and taking extra courses, or simply setting healthy boundaries and saying no.
Instead of making it a goal to go big or go home, aim for 1% improvement every day or every week.
What does this mean?
Identify the small things you could do that make the most significant impact.
Do you want to sleep better? Look at your activities before going to bed.
Are you aiming to be more patient with your elderly? Be more patient with yourself, rest or take a walk.
Large changes are often unsustainable. It’s the little adjustments we consciously make that make the difference.
Having a New Year’s resolution is a great way to start the year.
However, it’s better to save yourself from feeling like a failure when you don’t get to achieve your goals.
The key is to have a good understanding of why you fail to do these goals. When you are aware of why you fail, you become better at finding ways to find solutions instead.
In the next blog post, I will share how you could become better at setting goals and achieving them.
Happy New Year!
That's all for today.
Take care, keep mom safe and have a great day!