3 Tips for Keeping Your New Year Resolutions

With the 2014 holiday season coming to a close, the new year is quickly approaching. Just like every other year, resolutions will be made, and resolutions will be broken. By March, promises to get the perfect beach body before summer will be forgotten. The willpower and determination will only be a faded memory.

However, there will be the few who keep their resolutions and succeed. How do they do it? Here are some tips to help you become one of the few new year success stories.

Make Your Goal Reasonable and Specific

Don’t set a goal that will be impossible or unhealthy to reach. For example, don’t make it your New Year's resolution to lose fifty pounds before Valentine’s Day. Not only is that unhealthy, it is nearly impossible. Setting goals that are out of reach will only bring disappointment and failure. The discouraging feeling of not meeting your resolution will only make it harder to meet other goals.

Make your goals specific. Don’t say, “I’m going to be healthier this year.” Instead say, “I’m going to run a 5k this year” or “I’m going to stop drinking soda this year.” Instead of "I'm going to volunteer more," try "I'm going to volunteer every other weekend." Having a specific goals will make it easier to monitor your progress and see your success. It will also help you to stay focused on that goal.

Try not to make your New Year's resolutions list too long. Having too many goals at once will be distracting and disheartening. Chances are, you will not meet most of those resolutions and will end up feeling defeated. Choose what is most important to you and focus all your attention on completing it.

Set Check Points

Setting checkpoints can help you to reach your goals and stay motivated. If your goal is to lose thirty pounds in a year, divide that weight up into months or even weeks. Losing 2.5 pounds a month sounds easier than losing thirty pounds in a year. These checkpoints will help motivate you and make your goal seem even more reachable. When you meet a checkpoint, the feeling of accomplishment will help motivate you to reach your overall goal. Being on a timeline will also help you stay focused and on track to reaching your goal. You won’t put it off until November then try to lose thirty pounds in a month.

Checkpoints aren’t just for losing weight. Most New Year resolutions will be made easier with checkpoints. If your goal is to read a certain number of books, cut out bad habits, or plan an event or trip, deadlines will help make your resolution more attainable. For example, if your resolution is to pay off part of your student loan, decide how much you want to pay off by the end of the year. Then divide that into even smaller time periods and set goals for the amount you need to pay every month, or every three months.

Get a Support System

Meeting your New Year's resolution can be a daunting task. At times, you will feel overwhelmed and frustrated. During these times, you will need a support system to help make your expectations a reality. Tell your family or friends your goals. When you feel like giving up, they will be there to encourage and motivate you. They will also help hold you accountable if you get off track. Your support system could be the deciding factor in your success. Choose people who will cheer you on but remain honest.

 

Accomplishing your goals will be challenging, but not impossible. If you get off track or don’t exactly finish your resolution, don’t let that stop you. Resolutions don’t have to be set on January 1. Look at the progress you have made and set a new goal and deadline. The most important part is to keep on trying.