It's okay to fall down, but it's not okay to stay down.

The beginning of a new year can mean many different things to many different people. Maybe you resolute to eating healthier, maybe you hope to stop smoking, maybe you wish to spend more time with your family, or perhaps you want to limit your time online. Whatever it may be, there is a good chance you've already fallen off the horse once, twice, or have given up altogether. And unfortunately for your sake, this is not the first time it's has happened.

But before you lose all hope in the "new year, new me" mantra, I think it's important to take a look at why exactly it didn't work out. It is so counter-intuitive to beat yourself up over a few bumps in the road. Instead, let's analyze what went wrong...

1. You were too strict with yourself

It's probably time, you know, that 4 hour-long gym session and a protein shake for breakfast aren't ideal in the long-run. No wonder you're fizzling out after a few weeks - that lifestyle just isn't sustainable! By going "too hard too fast," you'll likely resent exercising altogether, and maybe even convince yourself that you'll never change.

2. You weren't strict ​ENOUGH

For some resolutions, once a week, or even once a month isn't consistent enough to create a habit. If you're serious about incorporating something new into your life, you have to make time for it in your schedule. Get your butt out of bed and go to Sunday mass like you promised, stop procrastinating and finish that book for the month, and spend more time with your family because you said you would! Goals without plans are just dreams.

3. Your goals weren't reasonable

Say, your NY resolution was to travel more. Well, if by chance you are a full-time student, have a job, are paying off debts, and wish to have a social life, this goal can seem a bit far-fetched. Rather than getting down on yourself for not finding the time or finances to book a flight, make little goals like setting aside some money each week for a big vacation or taking a short road trip to the nearest lake when you're feeling restless.

4. You've talked yourself out of it

I'm sure many of us can relate to this situation. You hit day two and your friends are already convincing you to forget your "no-alcohol" resolution and come get a beer with them. There are so many reasons to say "no," but the voices saying "yes" are just too loud to ignore. You set this goal for a reason, and you'll feel so much better about yourself when you stick it through 'til the end.

5. You only made a resolution because you thought you had to

Despite pop culture influences and traditions, there's nowhere that says you have to set a goal for yourself. I mean, what makes January 1st so special besides the fact that we all change our calendars? Can we not get a fresh start, say, in May or in the middle of November? Chances are if you really don't care about what you swore to do in the new year, you're not really going to go through with it.

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