How To Keep Your New Year's Resolutions
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How To Keep Your New Year's Resolutions

"This year is the year I'll make it past February," you say, every year, without fail. But this year, I'm here to make sure you mean it.

How To Keep Your New Year's Resolutions

Say hello to 2018! For Americans, ushering in the new year means one thing: ushering in those New Year's resolutions. Whether it's a commitment to losing weight, hitting the gym or doing better in school, most of us have an area in mind we'd like to improve in the coming year. However, research suggests that only 8 percent of people actually achieve those goals. So, how can you keep your New Year's resolutions? Here are a few tips!

1. Write them down.

I am a huge fan of making lists for just about everything, and New Year's resolutions are no exception. Having your goals in black and white in front of you does wonders for making them concrete in your mind instead of just passing fancies. Post the list over your bed where you can see it every day.

2. Stay accountable.

Post your resolutions to social media or enlist a friend to keep you on track; it doesn't matter who you tell as long as you tell someone. Telling others about your goals will help you stick to them. After all, you don't want to let them down, do you?

3. Everything in moderation.

We tend to overdo it when it comes to our resolutions. No superfluous spending. Cut out all sugar from our diets, no exceptions. Setting hard limits is well-meant, but not terribly conducive for actually making a change. It's better to begin with smaller steps. Instead of cutting out all sugar, for example, resolve to drink soda only once a week. It's a much more manageable goal. Which leads me to...

4. Be specific.

"Lose 20 pounds" is an admirable resolution, but vague. How will you lose 20 pounds? You'll find your resolutions are much more effective when you phrase them in terms of what you plan to do instead of what you plan not to do. So, instead, try "I will go to the gym every Tuesday and Thursday for an hour" or "I will eat healthy snacks instead of sugary ones."

5. Keep track of your progress.

If there's anything I love more than lists, it's spreadsheets. Start a spreadsheet for how much weight you've lifted at the gym. Start another for how much money you put into your savings account each month. That way, you can look back on your progress at the end of the year and see how you've improved, even if you didn't quite reach your resolution.

6. Stay flexible, and don't get discouraged.

If you miss a gym day, eat too many calories or spend too much money, don't give up your resolution as lost. Acknowledge your mistake and keep trying. Even a little improvement in an area is better than nothing, and all of those little things add up in the long run.

7. Reflect.

Self-reflection is the key to improvement. If you failed in previous resolutions, reflect on why you failed, and make plans for how you can do better the next time. Reflect on what methods help you stick to your goals, and then exploit those methods to the utmost. Not all of my advice will be applicable to all people (especially those who aren't as obsessed with organization as I am), so at the end of the day, do what works best for you.

I hope you all succeed in your resolutions, and a very happy New Year!

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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