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How to Keep Your New Year’s Resolution

With the New Year comes promises and resolutions that you may fully intend to keep – yet rarely seem to last past March.  Keeping a New Year’s resolution isn’t necessarily about trying harder, it’s about making smarter and more realistic goals that you can accomplish. That way, you aren’t setting yourself up for failure and you can stay motivated all year long.  Here are some tips to make your resolution last until 2014.

First, make your resolution simple and something attainable. If your goal is to eat healthy or go to the gym, make small changes at first. For example, don’t make your resolution to go to the gym five times a week. A better and more realistic resolution would be to go to the gym two times a week. If you find you can start adding another day of exercise in, then do it. 

Next, you should tell your friends and family about your resolution. That way, you will be held accountable to actually go through with your resolution, and you may even feel guilty if you stop working towards your goal. An even better idea is to find a friend or family member who has the same goal. That way, you can keep on track together and use each other for motivation.

No matter what your resolution is, it is best to have short-term goals. By planning short-term goals, you are more likely to stay focused. Instead of making your resolution landing an internship by the summer, make it a goal to have researched internship opportunities by the end of January. Then, for February, make it a goal to have applied to two internships.

Also, write down your progress. That way, you will keep yourself on track.  Seeing what you have accomplished in black and white will force you to be honest with yourself.
And it is 2013, so why not experiment with new apps to help you keep your New Year’s resolution? A popular app for losing weight is My Fitness Pal. “It’s really useful because you can set goals and it will help keep you on track if used right,” criminal justice and psychology major Rachel Melchor said.  “If you can get a group together, My Fitness Pal allows you and your friends to hold each other accountable to reach your goal as it acts like a social networking site.”

Techcrunch.com lists 7 other helpful apps such as My Last Cigarette if your resolution is to quit smoking and the app, Betterment, if your resolution involves being more responsible about your finances.

And journalism major Megan Kowalski had one more vital piece of advice to add. “I think it’s important to have your resolution mean something personally to you,” she said. “The best way to stick to your resolutions is to have goals you can feel good about accomplishing, goals that make you feel like a better person.”

With the use of correct planning, picking realistic and short-term goals, friends, family, personal tracking, and technology, there is no reason you can’t achieve your resolution for 2013. But if you do find yourself in May and no longer sticking to your resolution, just remember, it isn’t too late to start working towards your goals again!

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