The beginning of a new year means a clean, blank slate, which usually means we get to create a long list of resolutions that we all promise to keep. But as the end of January quickly approaches, many of us realize it’s alot harder than it seems. Whether it be shedding a couple of unwanted pounds, saving a few extra dollars, or trying to quit a bad habit, setting goals for the new years can be exciting at first, but darn right difficult. For those of you who have yet to completely give up hope, below are a few good tips to make your new year’s resolution last!
1. Be Realistic
When creating a new year’s resolution, be honest with yourself. Make them attainable, consider the year before and recognize your situation. Reflecting on your mistakes and your past successes can help formulate a realistic goal that works for you. Ask yourself questions: How much time can I really commit to this? What’s stopping me from completing my goal?
2. Track Your Progress
After you set your resolution, write it down and date it. Write down your progress and any other steps you take to make your goal a reality. In addition, don’t be afraid to write down your thoughts and outlook as you make your progress. Preferably, keep this in a journal rather than a smart phone, that way it’s separate from other distractions and limitations.
3. Get Motived, Feel Inspired
Reading up on success stories or other sources of motivation can spark a fire inside you to stick to your resolution. Get inspired by the wisdom of others and get passionate about what you’re doing. For example, if your goal is to keep your grades up, take advantage of your resources and seek advice from those who seem to always be on top of their game. Trying to save up for a vacation? Read up on money saving tricks, subscribe to airfare promotions, and learn about the adventures to be had around the world. Save clippings and links that pertain to your resolution or search through magazines and start a new Pinterest board.
4. Team Up
Who says you have to go at it all alone? Find a friend or family member to team up and to help push each other towards success. Even if your resolutions are different, keep each other accountable and support one another through the ups and downs. Consider it to be a bonding experience with someone you trust and care about.
5. Set Small Goals Within Your Goal
The only way to get where you want to be is to make consistent progress. Create mini goals each week to lead to major success. Trying to go down a few dress sizes? Set a weekly or even daily achievement like, having an extra helping of vegetables for dinner instead of eating starchy foods. Don’t get discouraged if you don’t stick to them right away, but keep setting them and trying again.
6. Take It Seriously, But Not Too Seriously
When making any change in your life, you should consider it with a sense of importance. Otherwise what’s the point of even making an effort to change? But don’t ever let it interfere with other aspects of your life that you consider to be equally as important. Keep in mind that while resolutions should be a priority, they shouldn’t be the only focus in your life.
7. Reward Yourself
Find victory in the challenges you overcome in your progress. You’re working hard to change and you deserve to let yourself indulge once in a while. Treating yourself is telling yourself that you are proud about your success. Don’t feel guilty, get excited!
When December 31st rolls around, regardless of your achievements, don’t forget to accept yourself ungrudgingly. Even if things didn’t end up the way you thought they would, recognize that you took intiative to try and change your life. Don’t look at it as a failure and always remember that you can try again the next year!