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How To Keep Your New Year’s Resolutions

Christmas vacation is officially over and, along with it, that period of free time that you were using to stay on top of your New Year’s resolutions. Now that classes have started up again, studying, extracurricular activities, working, and keeping your resolution momentum can feel like a balancing act. Here are a few tips guaranteed to make sure you stay on your A-game, regardless of what your resolution is:

1. Stop calling them resolutions–New Year’s resolutions are your way of making sure that the year ahead of you will be great and marked with personal progress, but a lot of people tend to lose steam and, well, flake. The word “resolution” is to blam for some of that short-term implication, when what you want is results in the long run. Stop thinking about them as resolutions and more like changes that you’re dedicated to making and implementing not just in 2014 but for the rest of your life.

2. Tell people about it–Creating a support system is important not just because these people will serve to motivate and inspire you when you’re less than enthused but also because, in a sneaky way, they’ll make sure you’re pulling through. By having your family and friends interested and asking about how your resolution is going (“how’s the gym/diet/vow of chastity working for you?”), it almost pressures you into following through with your resolution because you’re far more likely to do things if you feel like someone is counting on you to do them.

3. Consistency is key… –Resolutions require serious commitment and willpower on your part, mostly because a lot of the most common ones (exercising more, eating healthier, becoming more organized) mean implementing daily changes that a lot of people with a busy schedule have a hard time doing. The key to successfully keeping your resolution is to make sure that you make time for it. Plan ahead so that you’re not tempted to just forget it altogether: go to class dressed for the gym so you can head there straight from school, pack healthy snacks in your bag so that you don’t feel lik fast food is your only option for lunch, buy a planner and write everything out, etc. Half of the hard part is just being prepared and you’ve got the rest, ‘cause you’re awesome.

4. … But don’t sweat it –Life happens, and not always the way you want it to. There are going to be times when there are more pressing matters to attend to (or you’re just, like, really exhausted and want to watch Netflix instead of actually being productive) and you’ll have a minor slip-up. As frustrating and discouraging as those moments can be, don’t let them get in your way: slipping up a few times is hardly worth foregoing your resolution for. You made a promise to yourself and, with time and effort, you’ll get to where you want to be eventually. Today it might not have worked out, but tomorrow is always another day. 

Gabrielle Thurin is a Sociology major at the University of Puerto Rico, Río Piedras campus. She interned at the professional services firm Ernst & Young during the spring of 2013 and spent the summer of 2013 as an intern at the prestigious law firm Fiddler, González, & Rodríguez, P.S.C., where she currently works part-time as a law clerk in the Foreclosures department. Gabrielle enjoys reading, pop culture references, vintage-inspired dresses, and discovering new things. Also, Netflix.
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