Why New Year Resolutions Fail?

Why most people set goals but they don’t realize them. Why New Year resolutions last only few days or weeks? Why do some people fail to stick to their decisions and goals and later invent excuses to justify their in-actions?

New findings in neuropsychology pave the way about how our brains are wired and how we are conditioned. Many resolutions fail right from the goal setting part. Most of goals fail because we set them consciously but goals are achieved more subconsciously than consciously. Since most of our behavior is automatic and habitual, they are operated through a subconscious process of conditioned responses. If there is a contradiction between the conscious choice of resolutions and the subconscious ways of believing and achieving goals, often we do not materialize any of our resolutions and soon we forget that we have even set them.

Our brain works in a protective manner resisting change and naturally, it is easier to escape responsibilities rather than to take full responsibility for change and progress. Our brain knows that most of the goal realization process involves lifestyle change, habit change, thinking change, intense discipline, delayed gratification and doing the extra mile etc. Since our brain is wired to avoid pain and embrace pleasure and rewards, it chooses to embrace the comfort zone rather than the growth zone.

In addition, if the fear of failure is strong in the subconscious mind of a goal setter, he will procrastinate action and make up excuses to avoid further action.

Our resolutions and goals are often conceived in the intellectual mind and we neglect most of heart’s desires. We often settle for what we get rather than what we truly want. Our heartfelt decisions are stronger because of the emotional connection it has; we tend to achieve anything we strongly feel or deserve, than what we desire.

Moreover many people think that making resolutions and setting goals as a one-time event, but in reality it is an ongoing process of rewiring the brain by adapting empowering beliefs over disempowering beliefs, healthy new habits over bad habits. We need to constantly strengthen and grow ourselves to achieve our goals. We need to make powerful emotional resolutions that will wire our brain with enough commitment to pursue and achieve our goals.

Most of the resolutions are weak commitments and they do not last longer. We think our will power can override our old habitual programs easily. As humans, we surrender to impulses rather than to our rational decisions.  We succumb to circumstances than to our choices. Most of our behaviour is automatic and habitual. This includes hundreds of tiny choices an decisions we make everyday. Our emotions override our rational thinking. Therefore the more emotional our goals are the more likely we achieve them. The cognitive choices of new year resolutions are random desires of wishful thinking for most people.

Why does this happen? According to the latest brain science – subjectivity overrides rationality. We are more subjective to our experiences than the rational choices we make. Our emotions override our promises. Therefore the key to strong decision making and resolutions is to make decisions that are emotionally wired, so that nothing in this world can derail you from your decisions and plans. Consequently you will do everything purposefully when emotions are appropriately engaged in the act.

You can set inspired goals, goals that will excite you, empower you, gives you the maximum pleasure of achievement – goals that give the maximum challenge and the pleasure you get from its accomplishment. Strong resolutions are a process of involving emotions into your decision making process; they give you required fire. According to neuropsychology ‘what fires together wires together’ and it’s impact lasts longer.

Goal setting is easy. Goal realisation is the hard one. Here momentum is the key. Most people miss out on the momentum while they are in the perusal for chasing their dreams. There is a tendency to give up when things don’t favour your way. In the insta world, people seek instant results. Well that’s not how most goals are realised on the first place.

Watch the goal setting documentary LIFE BY DESIGN to set and realise your goals for 2020. Master the art of goal setting.