Approximately 45% of Americans make resolutions each New Year. The first two weeks are usually very successful, but by mid-January about 50% of them will have already given up. Only 8% ultimately achieve their New Year’s resolutions by the end of the year.
New Year’s resolutions are simply very hard to keep for many people. What makes it worse is that implications of failed resolutions may have damaging effect as people start to distrust themselves. So what can help you to follow through on our New Year’s resolutions?
Firstly, most people make several resolutions at the time which eventually results in failure. Keep your resolution list as short as possible. In other words, work on one thing at a time. Secondly, people do not see it as a year-long process during which they need to change their behaviour.
“In order to change your behaviour you need to rewire your brain.”
People who fail to keep their resolutions tend to blame their own lack of willpower. Although it sounds more like an excuse there may be some truth in it. The human brain is the most complex structure in the universe. The prefrontal cortex is the brain area largely responsible for willpower.
However, the same area is also responsible for keeping us focused, handling short-term memory and solving abstract problems. This adds an extra “cognitive load”, which makes willpower weaker. In this day and age, digital overload leads to a negative effect on the brain, which leaves you distracted, foggy-brained and less productive.
Willpower is an exhaustible resource which is often compared to a muscle. Therefore, any kind of stress depletes willpower and subsequently makes you less productive. Although there are different types of stressors, the stress of daily hassles and frustrations often stem from incomplete tasks.
The world is more competitive than ever before. Everyone has a desire to excel in a particular field by performing consistently and successfully. If we take students as an example they are feeling an increasing pressure to study harder to obtain better grades and achieve qualifications.
The same can be said about professionals who have to work longer in order to complete tasks on time and gain that promotion. Brain training and the growing number of other methods are now available to people to improve their intelligence and productivity so they can reach their goals.
However, some of these methods are more effective than others. Below are some tricks that can help you change your behaviour without exhausting willpower.
Guilt and shame do not work either. Thus, the more specific your goal, the more likely you are to succeed. You also need to make your goals measurable, achievable and realistic.
For example, if you are a student your goal could be:
“I want to receive an average of 70% in all of my coursework this semester.”
It is important to make sure that break “macro goals” down into “micro goals”.
This will make it easier not only to get started working towards them but actually follow them through. An interesting concept called the Zeigarnik effect (Z-effect) explains this. It basically suggests that we have an instinctive desire to finish a task once we have started it.
This comes from the fact that we remember negative emotions and unfinished events/tasks more than positive ones. Therefore, the Z-effect acts as an intrinsic motivator. But what if the Z-effect is combined with brain-boosting supplements to improve the potential of our minds?
Nootropics are substances that are popularly known as “smart drugs”, neuro-optimizers and cognitive enhancers. Nootropics are typically categorized into seven single ingredient classes: Racetams, Stimulants, Adaptogens, Cholinergics, Serotonergics, Dopaminergics, and Metabolic Function Nootropics.
“More recently, Nootropic formulas, such as Learning Accelerators, have entered the market with great success.”
The brain neurons communicate by releasing and capturing neurotransmitters and neuromodulator chemicals.
By having the ability to alter these chemicals Nootropics enhance cognition, intelligence, memory and learning abilities. Due to their wide ranging benefits, Nootropics are often taken by high-functioning and overcommitted people (e.g. entrepreneurs, academics and students).
Specifically, they find that Nootropics improve their productivity by helping them to avoid unnecessary distractions. This is how they gain a competitive edge and succeed. When you are focused on achieving a particular goal, you need to make sure you can bring your A game every day.
In addition to maximal cognitive abilities this requires a lot of mental energy, motivation, concentration and alertness. Nootropics optimize brain functioning and give your brain a sense of reward. Supercharge your brain with Nootropics, increase the feeling of control and make your New Year’s resolutions stick.