Three steps to help our new year’s resolutions reach the end of January…and beyond!

New year, new set of new year’s resolutions?

As you know, a new year’s resolution is a goal, set from 1st January, to do something differently going forwards.  Typically, they concern achieving personal goals or breaking an existing habit. Those gems of losing weight and taking more exercise are the most common.

New year’s resolutions are believed to have become popular during the reign of Julius Caesar, over two millennia ago.  Caesar and his people started to make largely morality-based resolutions at the start of January.  This was done in order to honour the mythical god Janus, for whom the month of “January” is named.  Janus was the guardian of arches, doors, gates, beginnings and endings.  His two faces allowed him to look back into the past year as well as forwards into the new year.

The tradition has filtered all the way through our past generations to the present day; January 1st 2020 (Happy New Year, BTW!).  And yet, new year’s resolutions are often doomed from the start, with only 40% of people being able to sustain their resolution past six months. This is largely because human beings are the ultimate creature of habit.  It is said to be much easier to alter a person’s goals and intentions, than to change how they behave.

So, how do we keep those new year’s resolutions going for the long haul? Here are three suggestions:

1 – Goal Prioritisation
Will power is finite and resisting temptation drains that precious resource.  So, don’t try and have more than a single resolution.  And concentrate on making small, incremental changes, rather than descending into a diet so strict and rigid, that even a grain of sugar sends you running for the hills.

2 – Change of Routine
Habits are rooted in routine – disrupt the routine, disrupt the habit, thereby forcing yourself to adapt to new circumstances.  This might be anything from taking up a different activity in substitution for “takeaway night”, through to serving your dinner on smaller plates, to help avoid overeating.

3 – Monitor your behaviour
Actively monitor your goals to help manage your strongest habits and have a list of options to consider, for the most dangerous of your behaviours. For example, when your hand is straying towards that oh-so-tempting chocolate bar, take a moment.  And choose one of the options you’d previously considered as an alternative behaviour; taking a walk, perhaps, or drinking a glass of water.

Sounds easy, doesn’t it?

And what am I doing, you may ask?  Well, much like Fen, the female lead in ‘Difficult to Reach’, I am not making a new year’s resolution in 2020.  Instead, I’m undertaking a writing-based, 2020 Challenge, which you can read about here.

“Fen wandered happily around the room, swigging champagne and kissing everyone in the village, in celebration of her new start.  She had no intention of making any resolutions simply because this day, the first of a new year, was a big enough line in the sand.  When you’d made such drastic life changes as Fen had recently, new year resolutions simply didn’t feel appropriate.”
‘Difficult to Reach’ by Sarah Fennel

Good luck to all you brave 2020 resolution-takers!  We’re right behind you!

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Fenella Ashworth

Fenella Ashworth is a British author of contemporary erotic fiction.  All of her stories are available from Amazon and free for those with Kindle Unlimited access.  Her bestselling novels are ‘To Love, Honour and Oh Pay’ and the Daniel Lawson series.
Fenella also releases stories on BooksieSilk, Booksie, Lush Stories and Literotica, and is often visible in the Literotica ‘Erotic Couplings’ Hall of Fame (Top Rated).
For a chance to win copies of her stories in a free monthly prize draw, as well as keeping up to date with news from Fenella, please sign up to her newsletter.

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