4 Approaches to Making New Year’s Resolutions and Sticking to Them

Sometime around Dec 28th, as we start getting ready for the New Year, all of us have moments of reflection. You might not have read as many books as you wanted to that year, or you might not have eaten as healthy as you wanted. We tend to put an abundance of pressure on ourselves to change habits and “become a better version of ourselves,” but is this a good approach to take when trying to follow through with our New Year’s Resolutions?

According to Finder, almost 65% of people make some type of resolution for the New Year but 50% of those people aren’t confident their resolution is possible. Many have a hard time believing in themselves and their capability to accomplish their own New Year’s Resolutions. So where do we go from here?

  1. 1. Change the paradigm

    A healthy way to set up resolutions is thinking about what habits you currently have that are valuable to your success, health, or well-being. Appreciating what you have already done is the first step. After you do that, you can add steps to your routines that will help you reach your goals.

    For example, maybe you’re proud of how much you go on walks or that you eat a killer healthy breakfast. That is something to appreciate! From there, you can make tweaks and decide that you’re going to eat healthy snacks as well or start taking the stairs instead of the elevator.

    In this way, one sees the big picture knows their goal is achievable and only a few steps away. Once you make a plan, nothing can stop you from getting to where you want to be. Even if you get thrown off track a few times, you still know where you’re headed.

    Celebrate all the small victories, and don’t be so hard on yourself. In the end, it is all about self-improvement!

  2. 2. Believe in what you can accomplish

    Three women talking and laughing on the wooden bench next to the tulip flower field

    If a friend came up and explained their future goals and plans with excitement, we wouldn’t laugh in their faces and tell them they don’t seem feasible. We would more than likely get excited as well and encourage them to fulfill their desires.

    So, why are we so hard on ourselves? If we view ourselves more like how we view a best friend, we can start to believe in ourselves. We are all human, so remember that a little self-love can go a long way.

  3. 3. Set goals that you are comfortable with

    If a goal makes you feel uncomfortable in the sense that you think it may take longer than a year to accomplish, don’t put so much pressure to have it done. Goals as broad as “I want to learn Russian” make us want to give up before trying. Instead, think about: How can I make this goal more specific? What level do I want to be at? Is it the first foreign language I am are learning? What pace of learning am I comfortable in?

    From a vague goal, we can narrow it down to what makes us feel most comfortable. Instead of trying to learn an entire language, you can say: “I will be able to have a basic conversation and understand some Russian speaking/songs by 2021.” Goals like these gives you a gauging point of where you plan to be at the end of the year makes the destination clear.

  4. 4. Remember: even if you don’t accomplish those goals, you’re still an amazing person!

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    Sometimes, we forget about the goals we’ve made until it’s New Year’s Eve and the clock is about to strike midnight. Nonetheless, there are plenty of other small moments and achievements we should celebrate. It’s easy to count the failures, but you can turn those experiences into lessons.

    Enjoy the small moments. Remember that with or without your goals accomplished, you’re still an amazing person growing with each day.

Happy 2020!