The New Year is normally associated with new resolutions and optimistic thoughts of positive life changes. It is a time when we take stock of our lives and look to the past to see where we have some from and look to the future to see where we want to go.
However as you will know sticking to New Year’s resolutions is not easy and requires continuing motivation and tenacity to succeed; something that seems to dry up quite quickly hence the need to start all over again the next year.

So what happens? Why do we fail in our attempts to change our life so often before we really start? Perhaps we have a go and it just seems too hard to keep going. What then? We feel as if we have failed and to make ourselves feel better we give ourselves excuses.

There is a specific two word phrase that speaks volumes. It implies our acceptance of someone else's opinion and allows us to then voice our differing view when discussing something. It implies a contradiction by voicing agreement when we are actually disagreeing. It is a phrase that conflicts with itself. More importantly it allows us to put obstacles in the way of our personal success.

The phrase? Yes, but...
Yes but: the inner voice
The worst case of the ‘yes, but..’ is when we say it to ourselves. It is one of the easiest ways to set ourselves up for failure. “I thought you were going to change your eating habits?” Our little inner voice might ask as we eye up the pudding menu when we’re out. “Yes, but they sound so lovely...”. “Time for the gym,” we briskly tell ourselves “yes, but look at the time – that new programme you want to watch is on the TV tonight!”

A deeper way we do this is when we have a life dream that we want to realise. Do you want a great relationship, to be fitter, thinner or have a better job or career? Is there some habit you want to break? You think of someone else who has achieved this goal and then in kicks the inner voice shouting “Yes, but it won’t work for me,” or “yes, but I can’t do it” or even “yes, but I’m different”.

What does this mean in terms of our personal journey through life coaching? The “yes” implies our acceptance of what we want. We agree with our goal or our dream. It is after all what we are setting for ourselves; what we desire to change in our life.

So why do we do the “but” thing? There may be several reasons.
1. Fear of change
2. Poor visualisation of yourself in a successful outcome situation
3. Low self esteem
4. Lack of motivation

Change to just Yes!
To succeed in our goals we need to realise what blocks we are putting in our ways. Understanding why we are not achieving something will take you a good way forward to be able to reach your dreams. If you recognise any of the above reasons s being what really holds you back consider how you can change them to remove your self built walls and help you on your path to personal success.

Often a change of attitude will help you to overcome these issues. For example why do you fear change – is it because you are concerned that you may fail? What if you are successful instead? A focus on a positive outcome will help here. What benefits will the change bring? How will it improve your life?
If it is because you cannot see yourself succeeding ask yourself why shouldn’t you succeed; never think of why you will fail otherwise your mind focuses on this instead. Imagine yourself after you have achieved your desired outcome as if it were a fact of accomplishment. Use your senses and describe to yourself how it feels, what it sounds and looks like. Keep trying until you succeeding seems not just possible but inevitable – bring it into the present tense, “ I am getting fitter” not “when I become fitter”.
Low self esteem will mean that you do not feel you deserve to succeed or, as above, you cannot imagine yourself reaching your goal. As before work on really living your personal goal and tell yourself not only can you reach it but you do deserve it. It will take time; be kind to yourself and allow yourself time and ignore other people’s opinions.
If after all that you still don’t feel motivated ask yourself if it is the right goal for you. You may need to rework it slightly to focus on the benefits. Your goal needs to be a reward in itself to motivate you – for example “I want to look great in a size 10 dress,” is a lot more motivating and less finger wagging than “I need to lose 20 lbs in weight”.
If you are still struggling to achieve your goals after this consider enlisting the help of a life coach. They will encourage and guide you to fulfil your life goals and dreams at your pace, helping you at each step of the way.

Author's Bio: 

Jacky Tustain offers personal coaching to help those people struggling with their lives to re-assess their life priorities, work out what they want in life, set themselves goals and put them into action. Good coaching is about helping you get results, this often starts with learning to believe in yourself and building your confidence. Why not have a no obligation chat with Jacky? Check out for more information.