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Don’t Let a Slip-Up Cause You to Give Up!

by Beth on January 16th, 2015

Did you make any new year’s resolutions? How’s it going? About 50% of us give up on our resolutions by February. Don’t let that be you!

Many of us give up on our goals after we slip up. We eat that piece of cake or we buy another sweater online and those slip-ups cause us to ditch our goals entirely. Don’t use a moment of weakness as an excuse to throw in the towel.

Research shows that people who eat something that’s not on their diet are more likely to continue to overindulge. They tell themselves they have already ruined the day, so to hell with it. In fact, psychologists refer to this as the “what-the-hell” effect.

Your ability to stick to your resolutions depends on how you respond to your lapses. Here are a few suggestions for staying on track:

  • Be kind to yourself. Accept the fact that you will screw up. Everybody does yeah that’s okay. Don’t beat yourself up when you do. People who have self-compassion are more likely to bounce back from setbacks and stick to their goals.
  • Focus on the progress you are making. Set small enough goals so that frequent accomplishments will keep you motivated. Having realistic mini-goals will keep you from feeling overwhelmed and will give you the opportunity to celebrate small wins. Find ways to reward yourself each time you complete a mini-goal. Remind yourself that meeting your goal just two-thirds of the time is still progress.
  • Use your mistakes as an opportunity to learn. Did you eat that handful of M&Ms because you didn’t have a good breakfast, which meant you were starving when you walked past the bowl? Did you go to bed too late to get up early enough to make it to the gym before your morning meeting? Think about what you can do differently so that you are less likely to make the same mistake again.

Having self-compassion, focusing on your progress, and learning from your lapses will motivate you to keep moving forward and not give up.

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