5 Reasons why resolutions don't work - Ivy Tolchinsky %
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Ivy Tolchinsky 5 reasons why resolutions don't work

5 Reasons why resolutions don’t work

There are at least 5 reasons why resolutions don’t work. But  here we are the beginning of another new year. And if that’s not enough, it’s the beginning of a new decade. Loads of people are scrambling to make resolutions because that’s what you do. Right? If you don’t have resolutions then something wrong. Right? Actually that’s dead wrong.

Here’s  5 reasons why resolutions don’t work

Resolutions don’t work because they’re done in desperation

Many of us feel guilty after the holidays. We ate and spent too much. And definitely didn’t do enough exercise( unless you consider bringing a fork to your mouth as an aerobic activity.) Decisions made in the heat of the moment are reactive in nature and cost you more money that you spent over the holidays. Who hasn’t heard of the $900 clothes hanger;  that treadmill purchased on Boxing Day that lies abandoned under your dirty laundry.

Resolutions don’t work because they’re not  planned out

The beginning of the year is not a bad time to start something new. But when something is not properly planned out we can get derailed and lose momentum. Any significant change requires some intentional action planning. And most importantly, the underlying WHY of your change.

Resolutions don’t work coming from the Kingdom of the Shoulds

These resolutions could be coming from the Kingdom of the Shoulds. They are mean, disempowering and not particularly motivating. Unless you want to be “shoulding” all over yourself, you’ll want to remove this “s” word from your vocabulary. Instead of “I should lose weight” try replacing with “I could lose weight.” This puts the power back in your hands.

Resolutions don’t work when recycled from the year before

I get it. Recycling is very honourable. But when is comes to change, it may warrant some analysis. You say you want to get back to exercising, but you say that every year. Is there any excitement or desire to this goal? If it’s a recycled resolution the commitment is weak. There could also be a limiting belief or two hanging around  blocking your path.

Resolutions don’t work because there’s no real follow-through

With no firm commitment, there’s little chance of going through with your resolution. This comes from “it seemed like a good idea at the time” thinking. You’re super-excited at the outset. You buy the new sneakers and the expensive gym outfit. You renew your gym membership yet again. And attend diligently for a month, maybe two and then the excuses slowly start. Sadly your membership eventually goes the way of the abandoned treadmill.

So what does work?

I discovered the Word of the Year created by Christine Kane; coach, business woman and musician, about  10 years ago. Each year I choose a new word that represents how I want to be and feel for the next 12 months. I use this powerful tool daily to keep me centred. You can also create a vision board, a physical representation (cut-outs, photos, keepsakes, quotes etc.) of the dreams you’d like to fulfill. It’s another effective way to bring vitality and commitment to your goals. I host Believe it! See it! Create it! Vision Board workshops from time to time. Hopefully you can join me someday.

Whatever you choose, make sure to find something that works for you.

If you’re ready to take your  dreams and vision to another level, contact Ivy to Schedule your FREE 30-minute  consultation.




  • Jane Davey
    Posted at 19:46h, 20 January Reply

    This makes complete sense to me. Any resolution needs a plan to back it up and someone to be accountable to (like a coach if you can’t count on yourself just yet :). I mean,, if you have no one to answer to, not one rooting for you, motivation is dead in the water in no time…

    As for the Kingdom of the “Shoulds,” I am very glad I made my getaway from that place. It’s poison. Feeling somehow obliged to do something without your true heart involved, is pretty much a built-in motivation assassin..

    • ivytolchinsky
      Posted at 01:38h, 22 January Reply

      Thanks for your thoughtful answer. i’m delighted you see the benefits of coaching. Of course, your have first-hand experience. Also glad you have been able to escape that nasty Kingdom. Better places to live!

  • Anna Grosman
    Posted at 19:04h, 22 January Reply

    All this makes so much sense to me!

    Thankfully I have given up the religion called *shouldism” -there are only so many times one can hit their head against that brick wall. Likewise, resolutions. I have commitments I made to myself re. exercise and healthy eating. These are not resolutions but long standing lifestyle issues I have finally managed to put into place 🤞🏼. Making resolutions just sets us up for failure, self-recrimination and self-loathing. We deserve better than that! We forgive our loved ones for setbacks but we can be so hard on ourselves!
    Thanks, Ivy, for your wisdom.

    • ivytolchinsky
      Posted at 00:48h, 24 January Reply

      You’re pretty wise yourself, young lady!

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