As we enter January, many of us find ourselves swept up in the tradition of setting New Years resolutions. The promises to stop eating chocolate or to make drastic lifestyle changes. However, New Years resolutions can leave you feeling pressure to adhere to self-imposed expectations which can result in disappointment and frustration often overshadowing the positive intentions behind the resolutions.

The Problem with New Years Resolutions

How many New Years resolutions have you set and ended up failing? Let me tell you, the problem isn’t you. It’s the concept of New Years resolutions itself. Did you know that these resolutions actually set you up for failure? New Years resolutions are often too focused on an all-or-nothing mentality. The one time you deviate from your resolution leads you to throwing in the towel and giving up completely. How many times have you said you are going to give up chocolate, to end up eating a bar by week two and then giving up on your resolution altogether. And probably eating more chocolate that year than ever!

Not only that, it does not focus on why you set the resolution in the first place. You might have chosen to give up chocolate to be healthier, but with this resolution you are just focused on not being able to eat any chocolate! Frustrated and unable to stop thinking about chocolate, you end up losing sight of your overall reason for wanting to give it up in the first place. The temptation is too much and you eat a square of chocolate and you see this as complete failure. The focus on perfection rather than the journey to your aim of better health can be counterproductive and discourage you from meaningful change.

What you can do instead: Reflection and intention setting

Rather than focusing on specific resolutions, taking time for reflection on the year that has just gone can help to gain perspective. Sometimes this reflection can feel a little daunting, especially if your year hasn’t been what you thought it would be. However, reflecting on the past year can help us to appreciate how far we have come, even if you didn’t accomplish everything you set out to do. It’s important to celebrate your wins, no matter how small they may seem, and the recognise your growth and progress. You can also see where there is room for further growth and improvement.

Upon reflection of the year, you are able to determine what you want to attract more of into your life and what you want less of. You can then figure out what you want to focus and prioritise throughout the year.  Perhaps set up a theme for the year. What do you want more of in 2024? More family time? Better health? More career progression? An overall theme as opposed to a New Years resolution, will be more closely linked to your values. It will give you a sense of purpose, something to work towards, making it more likely for you to make meaningful change. 

Ditch The New Years Resolutions in 2024

Embrace a resolution-free approach that prioritises mindfulness, gradual progress, and self-compassion. By focusing on meaningful intentions and themes, you allow space for genuine personal growth without the weight of unrealistic expectations. Cheers to a year of mindful living, continuous improvement, and the freedom to evolve at your own pace!

Keep elevating your success and

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4 Benefits of EMDR intensives

Have you heard of Eye Movement Desensitisation and Repocressing (EMDR) therapy? Chances are that you have as it is becoming a more commonly used approach. It is therapy that has…

Hi, I am Dr Hannah Bryan, thanks for reading my blog.

I am a Chartered Clinical Psychologist and a Europe Accredited EMDR Facilitator and Consultant.

I have over 20 years experience in both the NHS and private practice.

Like you, I am only human and I have had my hard times and I have got many blocking beliefs that at times hold me back from me realising my potential and being my best. 

EMDR incorporated with coaching has helped me work things through and be in a position now where I have a thriving and inspiring psychology practice. It’s always a journey and I’m always working on my blocks, my mental health and my well being.

As well as coaching, I also provide psychological therapy and support other therapists training in EMDR, I am a Facilitator on training courses and offer specific supervision packages and training to support this. Click here  to book a free 15 minute coffee chat with me to see if I can be of help to you.