The Great New Year's Resolution. Part 1: Why we set them...

Updated: Dec 30, 2020

Every year you set them. New Year, New Me. This year will be different. This Year I'm finally going to start...etc etc.

Well here's a nice positive stat to get you motivated; 80% of New Year's Resolutions fail by mid-Feb. 6 weeks. That's it. 12% of the year. Failed. Oh well, start again next year I guess.

So, instead of setting up in the same way again this week, here's the first of three short blog posts to help you maximise your chance of success and resolution glory in 2021. Let's face it, after a rather rubbish 2020 I'm certainly feeling 'up for the fight' in 2021.

Before we get into the juicy bits of how we can actually make it happen in 2021, it's worth exploring the basic psychology behind why we love New Year's Resolutions in the first place.

There's something called "The Fresh Start Effect". Seriously. It's a thing.

We all love a fresh start. It's important we can employ them as and when we need because the complicated, full-on, hectic, stressful, mind-splitting challenges and demands of life simply demand that we can sometimes say "right, that's it - starting on Monday I'm going to...."

Making a fresh start informally permits us to forgive those imperfections and faults of the past. Ate a whole packet of biscuits Wednesday night? Doesn't matter, start again Monday. Having a big blow-out this weekend? Doesn't matter, fresh-start next week.

Giving ourselves a fresh start is a hefty tool in the quest for motivation. At The 200 Club we effectively give ourselves a fresh start every Monday as the weekly points we've all accumulated resets on Sunday night. Had a rubbish week last week? No worries, let's go again.

It's also interesting that fresh starts come at certain specific moments throughout the year. If you're a teacher I bet you make little changes at the start of a term. Lent is another perfect opportunity to clean up some of our unhealthy habits as we ban things until Easter. What bigger a moment to 'reset the dial' than the first day of the year?

A New Year's Resolution is an admission of our own dissatisfaction with ourselves. I bet you've never set a resolution to do something you're already really good at. That kinda isn't how it works. What we're saying is "I don't exercise enough. I don't like how I look/feel. I want to be fitter." We're essentially admitting a fault - that we didn't exercise enough this year, and that needs to change.

So in summary, if I can admit to a past failure, allow myself to write it off and give myself an almost-guaranteed chance of success simply by starting it on 1st Jan then sign me up, I'm there.

But we know there's a little more to it don't we.

Part 2: "Why New Year's Resolutions Fail" will be posted tomorrow night...

The 200 Club

The 200 Club is an online club to motivate you to do more exercise. You have to earn 200 points per week and you get points for exercising. The formal launch is in February 2021, in line with the release of The 200 Club App. It’s fun, informal, led by some great instructors and makes exercising into a game. It’s suitable for everyone and you can get involved at

146 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All

The Great New Year's Resolution: Making it stick

Part 1: We looked at why we set them Part 2: We looked at why they fail Welcome to Part 3: How to make them stick. So this is the positive, exciting bit. The part where we feel we're ready to take on