New year’s resolutions: Make ‘achievable’ goals - Mzansi Stories

Saturday, January 2

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New year’s resolutions: Make ‘achievable’ goals

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New year’s resolutions: Make ‘achievable’ goals
Famous American author, entrepreneur and motivational speaker, Jim Rohn, once said, “Discipline is the bridge between goals and accomplishments”. We all set goals every night when we go to bed and in the mornings when we wake up however how many of those goals are realised when the day, week, month or year comes to an end? Throughout the history of humans, many ‘disciplined’ individuals have been recorded to have been the ones achieving their goals irrespective of how big or small the initial goals were. For the purpose of this topic, forget about famous sayings such as, “good things come to those who wait” because in this topic, the ‘waiting’ part is what constitutes the problem in hindering one’s accomplishments of their set goals.
The following three, are some of the most common resolutions that people make at the beginning of every year:
1. I want to start saving money
2. I want to lose weight
3. I want to stop drinking and/or smoking
Many of you are familiar with the abovementioned resolutions because you probably will make them in future, that’s if you have not yet made them before in the past. The real reason behind the failure of every maker of the resolution is LACK OF DISCIPLINE. Have you ever seen people in any race, for instance, the comrades’ marathon? When that gunshot is fired in the air, every runner sees themselves crossing that ‘Finish’ line. What many of these runners do not realise is that there is approximately 89 kilometres of road ahead that has to be completed in a set time of 12 hours, ie from 5am to 5pm. Furthermore, there is a lot of effort that goes into the preparation of the race, including going through a ‘strict’ diet programme, as well as other mental and physical preparations for the marathon. Throughout the excruciating 12 hours, many will give up and not finish the race as a result of their poor preparation for this mammoth task.
The same principle should be applied to making resolutions at the beginning of every year. Arguably, every person in the world makes new year’s resolutions every year however only a small fraction of the world population will actually achieve or accomplish their goals. Can I urge you today to join that small fraction of the world population and become an achiever too? How will you do this, you ask. It’s simple; by following the guidelines provided below:
TIPS ON HOW TO ACHIEVE YOUR NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTIONS
1. When trying to save money, do not be too ambitious. Even though there is nothing wrong with dreaming about driving a luxurious car and staying in a palace-like mansion, don’t set goals that will fail and demotivate you in the long run. Especially with financial goals, make goals that are achievable. For instance, one of your new year’s resolutions may be to buy your very first car. Yes, there’s nothing wrong with dreaming about one day owning a brand new Mercedes Benz C63 AMG however as a first time car buyer, you have to take some factors into consideration: How much does a brand new C63 AMG cost? How much will I be paying monthly should the bank agree to finance me? Have I, as a first-time car buyer, considered the cost of monthly insurance premiums? How about general maintenance of the car, such as putting fuel in the car and/or replacing worn-out tyres? That being said, when your new year’s resolution is buying your first car, be realistic and think of a car that you can afford to save between 10% deposit of its purchase price, ie saving ‘an achievable’ R15 000 for a preowned R150 000 Volkswagen Polo or Toyota Yaris. REMEMBER THIS: If you’re disciplined enough to accomplish small goals now, it will be easier for you to accomplish bigger and more challenging goals later on in life.
2. When your new year’s resolution is about losing weight, the first thing to remember is, work smarter, not harder. Let’s take for instance two guys trying to lose weight—Guy A and Guy B. Guy A runs 15 kilometres a day and does 500 push-ups when he gets back from his jogging session. The problem with Guy A is that he eats each and every single thing he craves (and he is bound to crave many foods especially after his exhausting workout, ie his body will be trying to replace all the energy he would’ve lost during the workout). By the end of the month, Guy A will end up gaining more weight than he loses as his body will store more fat to be used as energy for his future workouts. Guy B, on the other hand, only runs 2 kilometres a day and does 30 push-ups. The strategy that Guy B has decided to go with, is to consume less carbohydrates, such as rice, potatoes, sugary drinks, etc. Even though giving up on many of his favourite foods is hard, Guy B loses more weight than Guy A because his body does not need to store fat for any tough exercises. Furthermore, Guy B will have more time on his hands to accomplish his other new year’s resolutions when he loses weight from spending less time exercising. In a nutshell, the trick to losing more weight in 2016 is not to exercise more but to consume less fattening foods and drinks (the worst of which is alcohol).
3. If you want to stop drinking and/or smoking, engage yourself in activities that discourage these practices. For instance, spend more time around an elder that you respect and discourages you to drink or smoke, such as your parent or guardian, and spend more time at work, school and/or church. The human body is amazing, it can naturally adapt into a new habit or grow out of it when we refrain from engaging in such habits.
In conclusion, many of us would have been more happier with our bodies, lives, careers, etc had we disciplined ourselves in the beginning of the year when we set our new year’s resolutions. Remember how, as a baby, you crawled before you could walk or run? With this in mind, always set goals that will let you crawl through them before you set those that will expect you to run before even walking. You have the power to make these simple words of mine make a positive impact in your life!



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