It happens every year.

Great intentions, great goals, great start, terrible follow-through.

January’s a great month to get started on your goals as there are not too many conflicting priorities, but when life starts up again in February, it can get too hard and we often fall back into old habits.

It may be that you were aiming to save more, exercise more, pray more, read more or spend more time with your family this year.  Whatever it is, what can you do to help you get back on track and start building momentum again?

Don’t be too hard on yourself.  Some people are almost waiting to fail.  They have such low expectations of themselves that when they go back to their old habits they say to themselves, “See, I told you that you couldn’t do it.”

Change the sound track in your head and start being kinder to yourself.  Understand that there will be setbacks, even for the most motivated of individuals and maintain a positive mindset about your ability to change.

As Henry Ford once said, “If you think that you can or think you can’t, you’re right.”  So don’t be too hard on yourself and start believing again.

Get back on the horse.  Anti-smoking experts tell us that it takes an average of six attempts to quit smoking.  If you lose momentum on your goals, make sure that you don’t stay that way.  Start again and you may find that your attempt to change lasts longer this time.  You may still mess up in the future (you are human after all), but each time you try to change you get closer to long-lasting transformation.

A key point to remember here is that individuals who succeed aren’t people who never fail, they are people who know how to get back up again.

Remind yourself of your reasons to change.  One of the keys to remaining focused on your goals is to stay reminded of the compelling reasons that you have to change.  If the potential future doesn’t get your heart racing, then you’re less likely to push through the obstacles in your way.  Make sure that you have a clear and specific picture of what the future looks like once you have entrenched the new habit that you’re wanting to create.

If you had a  great January, but have fallen back a bit this month, let me encourage you that the year isn’t over yet.

This year can still be a great year, so let’s get back on track together and make it happen!

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