The mother of all resolutions…

New Year’s Resolutions sit at the heart of Fig Swims the World.  By having Fig’s mother choose her resolutions for her, it was an easy way to create the rift that I wanted, with Fig growing ever more frustrated that she’s being controlled and for this to be the drive as to why she takes on something so big.

Now that it’s June and halfway through the year, it’s perhaps the perfect time to revisit our resolutions.  Research shows that around 25% of us will fail after just one week while only one in ten make it to the end of the year.  In fact, it’s got to the point where many people vow not to make them at all.  The fear of failure being too much of an unnecessary burden.  But we really shouldn’t think that just because we haven’t started them yet, that it’s all over. We do have until the end of the year after all!  And by revisiting them, we can amend them to be more achievable and perhaps more indoor based, in light of the current Coronavirus situation. 

I like setting goals for myself.  It gives me purpose and I like the feeling of challenging myself.  So, here’s a few ideas on how to succeed in your resolution:

1.     Start with what you enjoy

I’ve always been a swimmer, albeit a pool one, so when I saw a photo of a massive swimming event in a warm country with deep blue sea, it naturally spoke to me.  I gave myself a year to train toward it, found myself a swimming coach and used the opportunity to swim more.  And it being something I already did it didn’t feel like an insurmountable challenge.

2.     Make sure you’ve got someone to support you

I wrote my first book because a good friend in publishing encouraged me to do so. I wrote a chapter and asked for her honest opinion: Could I write?  Fortunately, her answer was yes!  She even gave me a few pointers on how to change it and what I might do differently, offering me support throughout, and before I knew it, I’d written an entire book!

3.     Write a list

I love writing lists.  It’s my only way of staying on top of everything I’ve got to get done.  From to-do lists to birthday present ideas, book titles I’d like to write to wish lists of places I’d like to swim.  It’s a good way of breaking down a challenge into smaller more manageable pieces and it’s deeply satisfying when you get to cross something off.

4.     Take on a challenge with someone

When I found out about a trip to Lundy Island where you can actually swim with seals, I knew I wanted to do it.  The fact that my sister wanted to go too, made it doubly fun.  It took us over a year to do it, thanks to bad weather, but together we persisted and eventually got to swim, snorkel and paddle-board among the seals, and even sailed alongside a huge pod of dolphins.

5.     Don’t worry if you fail, you’ve still learnt something

A few years ago, I decided to learn to free dive.  Mainly because I wanted to be photographed as a mermaid underwater.  I thought that because I was good at swimming, I’d automatically enjoy free diving. Oh, how wrong I was! My ears hurt, I couldn’t hold my breath for long and I hated it. Even had watery nightmares for months after. And in the photos, I look cross eyed and strange and definitely not mermaid-like.  However, all that knowledge didn’t go to waste.  I can now happily dive down in my local quarry and when I next get to go to a tropical beach, I’ll definitely be there with my snorkel.

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