The Ultimate Guide To New Year's Resolutions

The top 3 new-year’s resolutions (in order) are:

  • Exercise more

  • Eat healthier

  • Lose weight

If you’re like most, you have a desire to grow and improve your life.

But there’s a catch:

80% ditch their resolutions within January, 92% do so throughout the year.

What's behind this staggering failure rate?

And how can you avoid falling into the same trap?

The reality is that common resolutions barely scratch the surface for what it really takes to create a different life.

Let's explore what it really takes to achieve lasting transformation.

Keep reading for the deepest explanation of goal-setting you’ve ever read.

The ultimate guide to new-year’s resolutions

To learn about success, I always look at one person:

Arnold Schwarzenegger.

No matter what he set his mind to, he achieved it:

  • Entrepreneurship

  • Bodybuilding

  • Real estate

  • Hollywood

  • Politics

The secret?

Arnold attributes much of his success to “this unusual talent in that I could see things very clearly in front of me”.

Here's one of my favorite quotes from him:

"Create a vision of who you want to be, and then live into that picture as if it were already true"

There are two things that stand out:

1 - He had a clear vision

When Arnold came to America, he knew exactly what he wanted:

To become the best bodybuilder in the world, win the trophy in front of a roaring crowd and then become a famous actor.

This is clear, specific and motivating.

Compare his vision with generic new-year’s resolutions and you already start to see the problem.

Let’s take “losing weight” as an example:

It’s so vague that you couldn’t even tell whether you’ve achieved it or not.

  • How much weight do you want to lose? 10lbs? 50lbs?

  • What do you want your body to look like?

  • How do you want to feel?

“Exercise more” is even less specific:

  • What kind of exercise do you want to do? Weight lifting? Running? Skiing?

  • What exactly does “more” mean? Twice a week? Every day?

  • What will exercising do for you?

Those resolutions are like saying “I want to travel”, without knowing the destination - you’ll never get anywhere.

But the second aspect is even more remarkable:

2 - His vision is internally grounded

Arnold didn’t just “wish” to be the best bodybuilder in the world.

Notice how he talks about creating “a vision of who you want to be” and living “into that picture as if it were already true”:

It’s about how you’re showing up in life - who you are being at your core.

Who you are determines your habits, which determine your results.

So if you’re able to align your identity with your goals, you’ve basically won.

How do you do that?

Let’s use the most powerful model for personal transformation.

Change from the inside out

This brings us to the 6 Logical Levels by Robert Dilts:

This is a powerful model that encompasses all aspects of personal transformation.

It consists of 6 levels - all of them can be aligned with your goal, to create the most powerful effect.

Here’s how it works:


In 2019, I moved to Vienna to train at the best gym in the world.

Surrounded by competitive powerlifters and bodybuilders, my results went through the roof..

Neglecting your environment is like trying to grow a garden in the desert - it won’t work.

And no, you don’t have to move to a different city to use this level.

Here are some much simpler ways:

  • Buy healthy groceries

  • Go to a gym you actually like

  • Get an accountability partner


“You don’t get what you want in life, you get your habits!”

This is one of the most powerful statements I’ve learned from my coach Jim Fortin.

Your goals require actions that you can stick to consistently.

Here are some examples:

  • A daily 10 minute walk

  • Drink water early in the morning

  • Eat one meal of the day unprocessed


Just like building a business requires you to develop skills like marketing or sales, getting in shape does the same.

For example, you might realize you’re a terrible chef and lack the time to learn to cook fancy meals.

Here are some things you could do:

  • Learn how to meal prep quickly 

  • Learn how to eat healthy at restaurants 

  • Learn cooking simple recipes that take less than 10 minutes


Values are simply what’s important to you - they fuel intrinsic motivation.

Think about parents:

Do they always “feel” like taking care of their kids?

No - they have days where they’re exhausted, stressed, emotional and might even feel like they can’t keep going.

But they do it anyway, because it’s the most important thing in their life.

Do the same with your new-year’s resolution:

  • Why is this important to you?

  • What’s the impact this would have on your life?

  • What would become possible for you in your career and personal life?


Beliefs are like filters that shape our perception, determining what we see as possible or impossible.

They can be hindering or fostering - take this common example:

“Weight-loss is only possible through restrictive diets”

If that’s your model of the world, you won’t even consider alternative options that are not restrictive (and fail long-term).

The easiest way to bust limiting beliefs is to find counter-examples:

  • Are there any people who got in shape without restrictive diets?

  • What are their beliefs about weight-loss?

  • How did they reach their goal?


Tony Robbins said "The strongest force in the human personality is our need to stay consistent with how we define ourselves".

To improve your health, start seeing yourself as a person who prioritizes health:

  • How would that person feel?

  • What would that person think?

  • How would that person be perceived?

Anchor your resolution in the depths of who you are to create it.

Vision, mission, purpose

Think about projects like the moon landing:

Those were only possible through mission and vision.

If you can tie your resolution into a higher mission of your life, you won’t run out of motivation.

For example, let’s say your mission is to be a great dad:

  • How would it impact your kid if you became healthier?

  • What beliefs would he or she adopt about health that way?

  • What would he or she learn, seeing you exercise and eat healthier?

Let’s bring it together

Okay, this was a lot.

Let’s get concrete:

Clarifying your goal

The simplest and most popular framework is the SMART framework.

SMART goals are:

  • Specific

  • Mesurable

  • Attractive

  • Realistic

  • Timebound

Here are some questions that will help you flush this out:

  • How do you want to look? 

  • How much weight do you want to lose?

  • Why is this important to you?

  • By what time have you reached this goal?

  • What can you do that has the biggest impact to accomplish this goal?

  • What will reaching this goal change for you?

  • How are you going to feel?

Once you’ve done it  you will get a goal formulated like this:

I will lose 30lbs and have visible abs by June 1st, 2023 . I will achieve this by exercising 3 times per week with a personal trainer/coach, reducing my sugar intake by 50% and maintaining a calorie deficit. I will finally feel strong, energized and amazing about myself when I look at myself in the mirror.

Compare this with the initial resolution:

“I want to lose weight.”

Much more compelling, right?

Logical alignment

Now, take your specific goal and align it with each level.

Here’s what this looks like:


Stock a healthy fridge, keep a water bottle handy, choose a well-equipped gym.


Working out 3 times/week, 1lb of daily veggies, daily walks.


Master simple cooking, exercise forms, and healthy dining out.

Beliefs and Values**:** 

"Health builds my business," "I prioritize my health", “Enjoyment goes hand in hand with health”


Be a health-conscious entrepreneur.


Be a role model for your kids.


Traditional New Year's resolutions fail because they’re unspecific and float on the surface. 

Using Dilts' Logical Levels, plant your resolutions deeply in the soil of your identity, beliefs, capabilities, behaviors, and environment.

Now it’s your turn:

If you’re serious about transforming your life in 2024, ditch vague resolutions.

Clarify your vision and start embodying it.

Not sure yet what this would look like?

I can help you.

If you're a driven entrepreneur or creator and looking to:

  • Manage stress in an efficient manner for better health and productivity

  • Drop up to 20lbs in 90 days, without the diet-hamster wheel

  • Reach your dream physique in just 2 hours per week

Click HERE for a free 30-minute strategy call where I'll show you exactly how it works.