Do New Years Resolutions Really Work?

This is the worst time to be setting goals and making new years resolutions, well at least statistically. According to polls almost all Americans – about 88% of them – will make a new years resolution this year.  The bad news is that half of them will have already broken their new years resolution by January 2 and more than 90% of those resolutions will have been forgotten by April 1 of this year.

So what does that say about you?

If you set an intention at the beginning of 2010 and have stuck it out for the last 4 days, then you’re ahead of at least half the pack.  Yup, it definitely says something special about you.

In fact if you keep up at this pace until April you’ll be a diamond in the rough – a rare specimen because only 1 out of 10 Americans keep their new years resolutions well into the first quarter of the year.

I started thinking about my intentions back in December. I didn’t wait until the clock hit 12 on new years eve – by then I had already made up my mind.   I had a clear picture in my mind.  If you’re not there just yet, then here’s what to do.

When New Years Resolutions Don’t Work

You’ve got to give yourself some time to think about what you want.  The worst thing you can do is rush.   Just take your time and think about what’s important to you – ask yourself, “What do I really want?”

If you’re mind goes blank or you feel unclear, then here’s an even better question to ask, “How do I want to feel?”

As you ask this question and jot down your answers, you’ll start feeling better.  As you start feeling better you’ll also start feeling more resourceful.  Once in that resourceful state go back to the previous question and ask yourself, “What do I really want?”

Jot down your answers using a pen and pad.  Once you’re done this exercise forget everything you wrote down and let it go.  The whole point here is to relax and let your subconscious go to work.  This state of relaxation will help you create more of those, “ah-ha” moments.  As you let go of the intention it will come back to you in the form of an idea or an action to take.

It’s sort of like lifting weights for a weigh-lifter.  A weight lifter receives the greatest gains in muscle mass when he let’s go – during the relaxation stages – and not during the heavy weight lifting stages. The weight-lifting causes the stimulation of muscle fibers and the relaxation lets the muscle fibers recover and repair themselves creating new muscle mass.

You want to treat this writing process the same way.  Let it stimulate your all-knowing subsconscious and let it go when you’re done with the exercise.  Follow these steps and you’re bound to come up with some creative and exciting ideas for 2010.  It’s pure genius, if you ask me.

Awakening Your Inner Genius,



  • Georgina

    Reply Reply January 4, 2010

    Hi Steve,

    Happy New Year.

    I have also wondered why resolutions are not met. I believe the answers ly in the behaviours

    See for my thoughts.

    Live YOUR Passion


  • Hema

    Reply Reply January 6, 2010

    Happy New Year, Steve!

    For stuff like this I read your blog!

  • Steve

    Reply Reply January 6, 2010

    Hi Georgina,

    Yeah, those nasty old behaviors from 2009 can creep up… especially when we don’t see them coming ;)

    Thanks Georgina – happy 2010 :)

  • Georgina

    Reply Reply January 6, 2010

    Same to you Steve.

    Live YOUR Passion


  • Nick Hill

    Reply Reply January 7, 2010

    Good post.

    For me I think that people ‘slack’ away from declared resolutions because they don’t really create a robust plan to achieve that takes into account the successful conditions for goal attainment.

    For a decent goal setting plan visit:

    Nick Hill
    NLP Trainer, Comms Tipster, Speaker.

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