We have all been there. A new year means new resolutions that we completely forget about by March. Resolutions can be exciting and a great way to bring about change in your life, but they can also be a source of shame when December rolls around and you realize that you didn’t stick to your established vitamin regimen promised in January.
So, with that being said, here is a list of tips and ideas that my close friends and I have assembled over the years to help you make 2021 new year’s resolutions ones that you are proud of by the time December 31st rolls back around.
One. Don’t be vague
I can’t tell you how often I have heard people say their resolutions are to “Be more present” or “Be more healthy.” While these are all admirable resolutions, how are you going to achieve them?
One way to avoid these vague resolutions is to use them as jumping off points. If you want to be more present this year, make your resolution to meditate at least three times a week or to start a daily journal. If you want to be more healthy make your resolution to drink 3 hydro flasks a day or to stop drinking sugary drinks. Making a plan that is reasonable and attainable will help you stay on top of your goals for the year. Start off with an overarching goal and then include action steps to achieve them.
Two. Don’t be too hard on yourself
So often I hear stories of people who gave up on their resolutions just because they slipped up for a day or a week. No one said that you had to be perfect in order to be successful in your resolutions.
Who cares if you forgot or were too busy to be active for a week? The key is to have high expectations for yourself, but not to beat yourself up if you stray from your goals. I am not saying that you should make excuses for yourself every other week, but give yourself grace every now and then.
Three. Don’t put too much on your plate at once
Who said that all resolutions need to start in January? Yes, a new year is a convenient time to start one, but it is not the only time. One year I made the mistake of starting 10 resolutions on January 1st and found that I didn’t succeed at even one of them. Now, I only start 1 or 2 in January. I write them down and do my best to succeed for at least a month. After I feel confident, I add more. Changing your life for the better should be an ongoing thing, not something that is restricted to January 1st.
Four. Are you making your resolutions for the right reasons?
This one took me a long time to accept, but the reason behind a resolution is just as important as the resolution itself. Make sure that your intentions are rooted in what is best for you and not anyone else.
For example, in the past I have made the resolution to work out more so that I am thinner by the end of the year. This year I have a similar goal, but it is not so that others will think that I am thin, but it is so I feel healthy and strong. The steps to succeeding in my resolution may look similar, but now the reason behind what I am doing comes from a healthier place.
Also, make sure that you are ready for whatever resolution you make, and it is okay if you aren’t ready yet! You want to set yourself up for success and sometimes we aren’t ready for the changes that we want to make. That shouldn’t keep us from making any changes, though. Instead of not making any resolutions at all, what resolutions can you make that could maybe prepare yourself for bigger changes in the future?
Five. Don’t keep your resolutions to yourself
Accountability, while it can be annoying, is key to successfully achieving any type of resolution. The first step to making resolutions reality is to write them down. Whether you use a journal, a post-it, or an old receipt, putting pen to paper and physically writing down your plans is so important.
The next step is to tell someone. Whoever you chose, your mom, your roommate, or your best friend, ask them to help you be accountable and support you. I have found that when I do this whoever I tell often has similar resolutions and then we can actively remind each other if we start to stray from our goals.
I love resolutions. I think that they symbolize change and taking control of your life. However, it is important to say that resolutions are not necessary by any means. If they aren’t your thing, then they aren’t your thing! Whatever you do, if you make resolutions or not, if your resolutions are grand or if they are about the details, do what is best for you.