How to Keep Your New Year’s Resolutions
While self-improvement at any time is a formidable task, the beginning of the new year is when most people vow to shed the extra pounds or ramp up their savings plans. It’s the most popular time for making and keeping resolutions, but studies show that only about 8% of people successfully keep their resolutions. Here are some tips and tricks to help you be one of the successful resolution-keepers.
Set baby steps for long-term results. The old saying goes that you eat an elephant one bite at a time. While most of our goals are far less nauseating, the idea’s the same for any big goal. For example, if you resolve to save $5,000 this year, shoot instead for saving $100 a week. You’re able to measure your progress along the way and all you have to think about is that $100 each week, not that insurmountable $5,000.
Stay focused on the journey, not the outcome. While losing 15 pounds is a valid goal, staying focused on how much you diet and exercise is more important. It gives you more control over small behaviors and helps you avoid the disappointment of not shedding the 15 pounds right away.
Schedule time for your resolution. Schedule gym sessions into your calendar just like a meeting. Over time, it’ll become part of your daily habits.
Use the Buddy System. Not only does this make you more accountable to your goal, but gives you the connection and camaraderie of improving together. The two (or more) of you can compare notes and progress along the way.
Keep Track of your Progress. Tracking your progress is a good way to stay accountable and keep the resolution fresh in your mind. Mark your calendar on the days that you go to the gym and watch them add up over time.
Celebrate the Small Victories. Just make sure the rewards you choose don’t work against your goal. Think of a healthy, relaxing way you can treat yourself and make sure it’s a positive reward that will actually help make you healthier and happier.
Reassess your resolutions. If something is not working, then you’re allowed to go back and modify your resolution. Self-improvement is about improvement, not perfection. If you can’t save $100 a week, shoot for $75 instead. You’re still saving and improving and keeping the ball rolling.
Don’t give up so easily. Often, we use small slips as an excuse to give up. Even if you have one, don’t throw in the towel. Forgive yourself, move on and keep trying.