How To Stick To Your New Year's Resolutions

It’s finally January; the new year is here, 2018 is over and gone (thank heavens), and 2019 has arrived. As per usual, with the new year’s arrival comes New Year’s resolutions, and it’s a well-known fact that those resolutions oftentimes don’t last very long. Here are a few tips to make them stick around longer than a glass of champagne stays bubbly.

Make attainable, quantifiable goals. It’s great to give yourself something big to look forward to, but the bigger the goal, often the harder it is to keep working toward it during the year once things get busy. Instead of vaguely promising to work out more, give yourself a goal of, say, going to the gym for an hour four times a week. It’s much easier to measure your progress and dedication to a resolution when your resolution is quantifiable like that. Rather than saying you’ll be better about keeping in touch with family and friends, block out a set time every week to call your parents or siblings or friends or set up a recurring lunch/brunch date every Saturday at a time that works best for everyone involved. Personally, if something is written into my calendar, I’m much more likely to do it than if it’s just a general notion of wanting to do something.

Tell someone else about your goal and ask them to help you stick to it. Sometimes it’s difficult to motivate yourself to do something you don’t always want to do in the moment, like going to the gym, but if you have a friend who’s willing and able to either encourage or join you, it makes it a bit easier to get up and going. Having someone else to hold you accountable can be good for persuading you to achieve your goals, especially if you find yourself prone to making excuses not to do something.

Write yourself reminders! Whether it’s putting post-it notes on your desk or setting daily/weekly reminders on your phone, having something pop up randomly or having a reminder where you can see it on a regular basis is super helpful for keeping you on track to your goals. Make it easier for yourself. There’s no need to make life more difficult for you, so try to find ways to make completing your goal less of a go-out-of-your-way task. For example, if you want to eat healthier, avoid buying junk food and set yourself a budget for any unhealthy food you might want to buy if you’re going out to eat or if you have massive cravings. Find ways to incorporate your resolution into normal life if possible; set aside half an hour a few times a week in your schedule to go work out (and I mean literally block them out in your calendar; mark them as busy and don’t schedule other things then if possible) or take the stairs in your dorm/school/work building if you can, etc. Incorporating your resolution into your everyday life makes it easier to follow and achieve.

Happy New Year and good luck with your resolutions!