What are your New Year's Resolutions for 2012? At the beginning of every year, we always make a list of our New Year’s Resolutions: Losing weight, stop smoking, get a better job, start our own business, buy a house, learn a new language, etc. But, have you asked yourself why some people are better at achieving their goals despite the obstacles and failures, while others get stuck along the way? Or why some people always seem to manage to keep the motivation and optimism to get where they want without letting negativity and sadness sabotage their goals and dreams? In reality, it all has to do with our level of commitment to the realization of our goals. Wishful thinking alone is not going to help our dreams come true.

Achieve your New Year's ResolutionsCredit: Fabiola Miguel

Here are some practical tips based on the principles of Neurolinguistic Programming:

1. - Set specific goals: it is important to write down our goals and objectives in a very specific and realistic way. Set your priorities straight and put them in order of importance and decide which goals are short or long-term goals. Be as specific as possible: what, when, where, how, with whom and set a deadline to achieve them.

2. - Benefits: What difference will this change make in my life? What are the benefits that I can enjoy as a result? Take a few moments to imagine and visualize what you want to achieve. As Albert Einstein said: “Imagination is more important than knowledge”, because knowledge is limited, but imagination has no limits. Learn how to visualize and do hypnosis so that your dreams and goals get to your subconscious mind, and so that your thoughts and actions are in alignment with those goals. You can do this in several ways: with the help of a professional, with the practice of self-hypnosis or through CDs, books and self-help programs.

3. - Steps to take: It is important to write a list of the steps you need to take to achieve your goals. For example, if your goal is to get a better job but you don’t have the skills or knowledge required, then the first step would be to upgrade your skills or get as much information as you can about the subject and learn how to increase your memory, concentration and motivation.

4. - Resources and Obstacles: You need to be honest with yourself and take note of the resources and abilities you have to make the changes you need. As long as you are truly committed to your goals, you will always find a way to achieve them despite the obstacles along your way. Be creative and come up with ways to overcome anything that could be preventing your success. It is easy to find excuses because, most of the time, the obstacles and limitations are within ourselves.

5. - Get motivated and keep the motivation: It is important to get motivated about making a change, but it is useless if you lose that excitement and motivation a week later. In this case, it might be better not to start because this only creates the bad habit of not achieving your goals and getting used to failure. Keep in mind that all habits and behaviours, whether good or bad, are reinforced with practice. If you are one of those people who always seem to postpone things or if you leave things unfinished, maybe it is time to find out the cause of this behaviour and do something about it to change this habit, increase motivation and discipline. You can use hypnosis and visualization to do this more easily and effectively. It is also important to surround yourself by positive people who support you and inspire you to be better every day and achieve your goals and dreams.

Once a week or at least, once a month, it is important to revise our goals, measure our progress and make necessary adjustments. If lack of commitment to your goals has been a problem for a long time maybe it is time to get in touch with a professional who can help you achieve your goals more successfully and increase motivation and confidence.  Good luck and all the best in 2012!