How to Keep Your New Year's Resolution in 2018

How to Keep Your New Year's Resolution in 2018

Become one of the 9% who see success in the New Year
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We all know the feeling-- you set a goal for yourself for the coming new year, and you are so excited to make positive improvements for your life. "New Year new me!" says you and about half of the people living in America. Nothing is as exciting as a fresh start. And then a couple of weeks go by, and the new year feels like just the same old boring routine, and you have already given up on your resolution to eat better, or exercise more, or to not text back that one guy that you know you shouldn't be talking to (yeah, you know the one).

We all know New Year's Resolutions are hard to keep, and that keeps many people from even making them in the first place. According to Statistic Brain, 41% of Americans make New Year's Resolutions, and only about 9% are successful. 17% of Americans infrequently make resolutions, and 42% absolutely never make them.

So what can you do to be a part of that 9% of Americans that actually see success with their resolutions? Well, here are some tips.

Don't make your resolution too big.

There's nothing wrong with aiming high and shooting for the stars, trust me. However, if you want to tackle a big goal, it is best to break that goal down into smaller, more attainable goals. This way, you have something new to work towards each week (or month) and don't feel overwhelmed by something that feels impossible. Setting a goal that is too big and not giving yourself a plan to get there will leave you feeling defeated and discouraged.

Be specific.

Instead of setting an ambiguous goal like, "I want to read more." Try something like "I want to read 20 books by the end of 2018." A specific goal helps you know if you are on the right track or not.

Don't make too many resolutions.

Make one to three resolutions that you are really passionate about and focus on those, preferably with one "bigger one" that will be your main focus and other smaller goals (like to stop chewing your nails).

Be realistic.

If you are a C or D student, your goal probably shouldn't be to get a 4.0 next semester. Instead, maybe your goal could be to get all B's, or get an A in one class.

Do your research.

Say your goal is to eat less meat in 2018 (yay, amazing!). Well, you should open up google and hit the library. Learn about protein, look up recipes, and understand macronutrients. This goes for any goal-- knowledge is your tool to success.

Work it into your schedule.

You are more likely to be successful at achieving your goals if you make new routines and habits. This involves sitting down at first and figuring out a time of day each day of the week to work towards your goal. Maybe your goal is to be less stressed, so you set aside 5 minutes in between classes to find a quiet spot and meditate. Write it down! Make it as non-negotiable as a doctor's appointment or work schedule.

Make sure you are highly motivated to achieve this goal.

If you are just making this a resolution because its a popular one, or your friends or doing it, or your mom said so, you probably won't be as motivated to succeed. Make it personal! This gives you every reason to stick to your resolutions.

Track your progress!

This one is super important in terms of staying with your goal. Your resolution will begin to lose its sparkle after a while. That being said, you have to remind yourself WHY you're doing it, and the results you are beginning to see. One of my favorite ways to do this with my fitness goals is with progress photos (weight can be discouraging, and muscles weigh more than fat, duh!).

Envision your goal.

One great way to do this is by creating a vision board. This can be inspiring quotes, what you envision life will be like when your goal is achieved, and the reasons why you're doing this. You can add things to the board as your goals evolve and change. Blogs, Pinterest, and backgrounds on your computer and phone are other examples. Envisioning makes your goal more tangible and keeps the excitement.

Join communities for people with similar goals.

There are so many online communities for all different types of goals. Talk to other people who have similar goals as you-- this can be nice when you hit a tough patch. You can talk about your successes, and gain insights on how to overcome specific obstacles. Follow social media pages that fall in line with your objectives too.

Find support.

Tell your friends and family about your resolution, and find someone that you know will be supportive and encouraging, but also will keep you on track. This person should be someone who won't judge you, and who you can be vulnerable to, but also someone who you know will hold you accountable.

Know it's okay to mess up sometimes.

I don't know about you, but the hardest time to stick to my goals is when I make a mistake. Just remember, that you are human and everyone slips up! So if you messed up and texted that guy that you resolved to not ever text in 2018 because you had one too many at Sigma Apple Pie, don't give up! Just pick yourself up, feel bad for yourself for a moment, and then put your big girl/boy pants on and get back to it.

Reward yourself for progress.

This is one of the most fun parts... You put the work in, don't forget the reward! Pick something that is special for you, and reserve it for when you have successes in your progress. Say your goal is to put away a certain amount of money into your savings in 2018, and one month you contribute a good chunk of change. Don't blow all your progress by spending all that hard earned cash, but take a bit and buy yourself something nice or go out for drinks with your friends.


So there you have it! Hopefully this brings you closer to achieving your goals and resolutions this new year. Good luck and Happy New Year!

Cover Image Credit: Chegg

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To The Girl Who Had A Plan

A letter to the girl whose life is not going according to her plan.
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“I am the master of my fate: I am the captain of my soul.” - William Ernest Henley

Since we were little girls we have been asked, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” We responded with astronauts, teachers, presidents, nurses, etc. Then we start growing up, and our plans change.

In middle school, our plans were molded based on our friends and whatever was cool at the time. Eventually, we went to high school and this question became serious, along with some others: “What are your plans for college?” “What are you going to major in?” “When do you think you’ll get married?” “Are you going to stay friends with your friends?” We are bombarded with these questions we are supposed to have answers to, so we start making plans.

Plans, like going to college with our best friends and getting a degree we’ve been dreaming about. Plans, to get married as soon as we can. We make plans for how to lose weight and get healthy. We make plans for our weddings and children.

SEE ALSO: 19 Pieces Of Advice From A Soon-To-Be 20-Year-Old

We fill our Pinterest boards with these dreams and hopes that we have, which are really great things to do, but what happens when you don’t get into that college? What happens when your best friend chooses to go somewhere else? Or, what if you don’t get the scholarship you need or the awards you thought you deserved. Maybe, the guy you thought you would marry breaks your heart. You might gain a few pounds instead of losing them. Your parents get divorced. Someone you love gets cancer. You don’t get the grades you need. You don’t make that collegiate sports team. The sorority you’re a legacy to, drops you. You didn’t get the job or internship you applied for. What happens to you when this plan doesn’t go your way?

I’ve been there.

The answer for that is “I have this hope that is an anchor for my soul.” Soon we all realize we are not the captain of our fate. We don’t have everything under control nor will we ever have control of every situation in our lives. But, there is someone who is working all things together for the good of those who love him, who has a plan and a purpose for the lives of his children. His name is Jesus. When life takes a turn you aren’t expecting, those are the times you have to cling to Him the tightest, trusting that His plan is what is best. That is easier said than done, but keep pursuing Him. I have found in my life that His plans were always better than mine, and slowly He’s revealing that to me.

The end of your plan isn’t the end of your life. There is more out there. You may not be the captain of your fate, but you can be the master of your soul. You can choose to be happy despite your circumstances. You can change directions at any point and go a different way. You can take the bad and make something beautiful out of it, if you allow God to work in your heart.

SEE ALSO: To The Girl Patiently Waiting With An Impatient Heart

So, make the best of that school you did get in to. Own it. Make new friends- you may find they are better than the old ones. Apply for more scholarships, or get a job. Move on from the guy that broke your heart; he does not deserve you. God has a guy lined up for you who will love you completely. Spend all the time you can with the loved one with cancer. Pray, pray hard for healing. Study more. Apply for more jobs, or try to spend your summer serving others instead. Join a different club or get involved in other organizations on campus. Find your delight first in God and then pursue other activities that make you happy; He will give you the desires of your heart.

My friend, it is going to be OK.

Cover Image Credit: Megan Beavers Photography

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You Have The Power To Create Your Happiness

You can make choices to live your fullest and happiest life.

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A big part of being happy is having the right perspective on things. Recently I was telling someone that I took something out of my life, her response was that I was never taking anything away from myself but rather I was freeing myself from something that brought me pain. When I heard those words, I instantly changed my perspective on so many things.

Too often we hold onto things that bring nothing but negative energy into our lives. When we choose to free ourselves from all of these things that hold us down, we can have such a better outlook on life. We can waste so much energy caring about things that will one day have no impact on our lives. Instead of continuing to let these things have a hold over our lives, we need to look past everything that's wrong and see everything that is still right in our lives.

Negative people and events will always come and go throughout our lives, but they should never change our outlooks. We have to remain positive and choose to see everything good that is still going for us. There is always so much to look forward to.

Staying positive can sound so cheesy and useless when you're having a low point, but it really is the key to having a better life. If you choose to look at all of the negative going on, that's all you'll see. When you change your perspective to see all of the positive things in what you do in life, you will become much happier.

It's hard to see the positive in every aspect of life, but most likely there is one. Every situation helps you grow as a person and there is always something positive to take away.


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