Another year has come and gone, and as is customary when ringing in the new year, many resolutions were made in hopes of making 2013 better and more successful than 2012. Undoubtedly, those resolutions are similar to the ones made last year, and possibly the year before. New Year’s resolutions are becoming something of a joke, as many people don’t make it a week into the new year without giving up.
Whether you are among the 25 percent of people who have already given up on their resolution, or if you are part of the 46 percent that will keep their resolution for over six months, here are some tips that will raise your chances of keeping your resolution until the ball drops in 2014.
First is being specific, and don’t try to focus on too many goals at once. Oftentimes we look at New Year’s as inspiration in making many lofty goals, some of the most popular being weight loss, organization, and saving money; however, we fail to form a detailed plan that will actually help us reach them. And without a specific number of pounds to lose, or dollars to save, it is difficult to form a plan at all. So no matter what your resolution is, make a plan and then stick with it.
Second is cutting larger goals down into smaller ones, and then re evaluate progress weekly.
“Recommitting to your goals, evaluating your progress and setting targets for the coming week each Monday, gives you 52 chances for success,” said Sid Lerner, founder of the Monday Campaign, a nonprofit organization that calls for every Monday to be committed to health.
This in turn helps people to make healthy choices throughout the rest of the week. The same can be applied to every goal, and evaluating progress weekly will allow you to see how far you have come.
After goal setting and planning comes the importance of encouragement and social support. You can reward yourself when progress is made towards a goal, and also enlist the help of family and friends who will encourage your success. Telling others also increases chances of success by adding the element of accountability.
No matter what you hope to accomplish this year, remember that patience is key as well. It is almost guaranteed that you will have set backs, but if you are patient with yourself you can keep making progress.