How to Create New Habits and Reach Your Goals Once and For All


Did you set a New Year’s Resolution this year? Does it happen to be the same one you set every year? If so, you’re not alone. Most people set the same resolutions year after year and have trouble achieving the goals they set, despite the best intentions. In fact, only 8% of people keep their resolutions and reach their goals. If you’re not in the 8% and you want to make a lasting change this year, read on for how to create real transformation.

Advice on way to meet and keep your goals is nothing new. There are lots of people talking about how to keep your resolution each and every year. Just do a quick Google search and you’ll find tons of seemingly helpful tips, including:

  • Make small changes
  • Find an accountability partner
  • Write down your goals
  • Use willpower
  • Allow for mistakes
  • Make it fun
  • Limit the number of resolutions
  • Make a plan
  • Write it out on your calendar
  • Be realistic

If you implemented most of these ideas, you would probably be on the fast track to success. So what’s the problem? Why are such a small percentage of people able to change their habits? More importantly, what is the 8% of people doing that actually makes a difference?

At the IAWP, we teach our Wellness Coach students how to help people reach their goals, whether its January or June and make the changes last. Habits don’t change overnight and they don’t change just because we write it down and say we want it. Here’s why…

Habits are formed in our brain as patterns and live in our subconscious mind. Our subconscious mind controls much of what we do each day. Even if we want to make a change, and have all the best intentions, our old patterns hold us back. They are the drivers of our actions, even if our thoughts and words are saying something different.

That’s why just saying we want something in life is not enough. Even if we go to the next level to get support in achieving what we want, whether it’s a coach we hire or someone else we ask to support us, sometimes nothing seems to work for us. What comes into play, besides saying we want something and taking action steps, is also a hidden element: our programming.

Let’s take a closer look at how you can reverse these old patterns by understanding your programming and your mindset.

Your Mindset

Your programming can also be referred to as your mindset. What are the thoughts, behaviors, and ways of relating to this world that make you think and act as you do? Each person is unique. Two people can have the same goals and same circumstances, but one person achieves their goal while another does not. The hidden element of our mindset is something we need to look at if we want to make a lasting change.

Your vision requires both inner work and outer work to become your reality.

Most people go through life without really understanding why they do what they do or what makes them operate. We tend to live at the conscious level, noticing just what’s happening to us on the physical level. What we don’t realize is that we essentially have our own internal operating system, which is driving all that we do. And if we can dig deep and get a clear picture of this operating system, we not only get to better understand ourselves, we also get to make better decisions and choices for our lives. And finally, keep our resolutions once and for all.

Understand your brain –

The conscious mind is whatever you are aware of in the present moment. The conscious mind can be characterized by your thoughts.
The subconscious mind is whatever you are not aware of in the present moment. The subconscious mind can be characterized by both our thoughts and our feelings.
Knowing that you have more than one “mind” can take the pressure off of failing. It’s not your fault that you don’t know how to access your subconscious mind. But now that you have this juicy information in your hands, there’s no excuse to not reach your goals this year. Read on to learn how to make it happen.

What to do next to make lasting changes – Try this starter exercise for examining your vision at the subconscious level before you set another goal.

1. Consider why you want to achieve your goal. What is the initial result? What is the bigger meaning of the goal? For example, if you want to lose 10 pounds, the initial result will be that you’ll feel better in your clothes. The bigger meaning might be that you’ll have more energy and feel like your old self again, which could lead to having a better relationship with your partner or your children.

2. Consider what has held you back in the past from reaching the goal. Now take a look at why you haven’t achieved this goal before. What went wrong? What could make it different this time?

3. Examine any unconscious, hidden fears. Now it’s time to dive into the subconscious brain. Find a quiet space and clear your mind. You might find journaling, meditation or music helpful to aid you. Envision having achieved your goal this year. Notice the positive feelings you have. Then, consider any potential negatives. (This is key to achieving your goal.) Was there anything you had to give up or let go of to achieve your goal? Or did you have to do something you didn’t agree with to make it happen? For example, did you have to give up time with your family or go against someone else’s belief of you?

4. Look closer at the potential negatives. Determine if they are fears or actual concerns. If concerns, look at how you can eliminate them or adjust things. If fears, tell them goodbye and reaffirm your goal.

5. Connect to the goal daily – Each day, spend a few minutes not just doing your goal but picturing your goal already achieved. Tap into the positive feelings and results you will experience.

This is a simple process to start looking at your goal on a deeper level. Usually, there are lots of things swimming around in the subconscious mind that need to be picked apart so you can move forward and create lasting change.

In addition, there can be other factors that come into play in reaching a goal depending on your unique situation. We recommend working with a coach who can help you breakthrough your old patterns and get to where you want to be.

Working through these things can be supercharged with the support of a coach who knows how to help you address your inner blocks and discover what old patterns are holding you back. If you want to do this type of inner work to make a lasting change, then connect with one of our IAWP Wellness Coach Graduates by visiting our Professional Directory at the top of this page.

If you’re curious about learning more about how to work with your mind to make lasting changes and would like to help yourself and others, then click here to learn more about the Core Coaching Method taught in our Wellness Coach Certification program

The IAWP is committed to supporting Wellness Coaches to create success and share the message of wellness across the globe. If you’re passionate about holistic health and wellness, inspiring others to be healthy and creating a career you love, then learn more by downloading our gift to you – The Wellness Coach Career Kit.

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About the Author

Suzanne Monroe

Suzanne Monroe is the author of Live Well Dream Big: The Ultimate Guide to Becoming Your Best Self and Living Life on Your Own Terms. She has also written and published The Holistic Cookbook & Lifestyle Guide: 12 Weeks to a Healthier, Happier You, the co-author of 101 Ways to Improve Your Health and the host of the Live Well Dream Big Podcast. Suzanne was inspired to create the IAWP Wellness Coach Training & Certification Program in collaboration with other leading health experts in order to inspire people to create meaningful careers and spread the message of wellness.

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