How To Successfully Keep Your New Year's Resolutions
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Health and Wellness

How To Successfully Keep Your New Year's Resolutions

What makes New Year’s resolutions so difficult to keep?

How To Successfully Keep Your New Year's Resolutions
Tohm Brigitte

Welcome to 2017. Throughout the past few weeks, you’ve probably been evaluating which areas of your life could use some improvement, and have formulated your New Year’s resolution(s) accordingly. It is likely that this is not the first year you’ve set this particular goal as your resolution, but this year you are determined to make it stick. You are probably even still in denial that you will completely give up on your resolutions by the middle of February. We’ve all been there.

What makes New Year’s resolutions so difficult to keep? Why is it that every year we are so excited and determined to make serious lifestyle changes, but lose all of that excitement and motivation only months, weeks, or even days later? What is the big secret to following through with our goals for the new year?

One of the biggest mistakes people make when setting their New Year’s resolutions is that they set themselves up for failure. If you set unrealistic goals for yourself, you are bound to fail. Everyone sees the new year as an opportunity to pile on a bunch of changes into their lives, but this can become exhausting and overwhelming; eventually it will burn you out. Instead, think carefully about which things you want to accomplish the most and focus on them. Once you have achieved them, you can work on other things, focusing on them one by one.

It is also important to be intentional about the goals that you are setting for yourself. Think about ways that you can be consistent in how you implement new habits into your life. Carve out specific times in your day or week that are devoted to your goal(s). If you don’t do this, it will be easy to forget about your goal, or to put off doing it until later. Take solid steps toward making progress with your resolution. Sit down and plan how you will incorporate the things you need to do into your routine. Most people’s resolutions entail an alteration in their lifestyles, so it’s important to set aside time devoted to them.

A practice I have found to be helpful in achieving my own goals is to think through the reasons why you want to achieve your goals, and to write them down. It is beneficial to keep a journal to track how you are doing with your daily or weekly progress. Sometimes it is easy to give up on our goals because we lose sight of why we set them for ourselves in the first place. It is also easy to become frustrated with ourselves if we feel we are making no progress with a particular thing. Journaling is a great tool because you can look back and be reminded of how far you’ve come since you started. It can offer much-needed motivation and rejuvenation when you feel like quitting.

As silly as it may sound, downloading apps is a great way to work toward your goals. There is an app for practically everything these days, and there is most likely something out there to help you stay on track with your resolution. Want to get in shape in the coming year? There are apps to help you do that. Want to start drinking more water, learn a new language, or start meditating each morning? Yep, there are apps for those things too. Most people carry their smart phones with them everywhere, so apps are a useful resource that you always have with you. Even if your specific resolution does not have an app, there are apps that help you track the progress of your goals. Go do a little research and start downloading!

One of the most important ways to work toward achieving your goals is to find people to hold you accountable. Whether it is a friend, a family member, or a coworker, find someone who will be consistent in asking how you are doing with your goals, and offer encouragement when needed. It helps if you find someone who has similar goals as you, so you can hit the gym together or quiz each other on your Spanish.

Here’s to the brand new year, and brand new resolutions. Let’s keep them this 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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