Written by Alan D. Benson
It is the new year, and many of us have new year resolutions that we aim to achieve. Setting these resolutions can be exciting and daunting, whether losing weight, getting a job promotion, or learning a new skill. While some of us have great intentions to attain them, staying on course to achieve them can be difficult. Unfortunately, studies have shown that only a few people achieve their New Year’s resolutions.
I have achieved some New Year resolutions as well as struggled at times in achieving them. When I don’t achieve a resolution or goal, I reflect on why I don’t achieve them. When I reflect, I come up with the reasons for starting too strong instead of pacing myself, becoming dejected if I am not at a certain point at a particular time, and letting other factors interrupt my focus, to name a few.
If you want to follow through on your New Year’s Resolution, here are 10 proven strategies to help you stay on track and make your New Year’s resolutions a reality. In achieving your goals, always remember that it takes work, commitment, and time to see a noticeable change.
- Reflect on Yourself: Before diving into setting your resolutions, take some time to reflect on yourself. What are your strengths and weaknesses? What motivates you? What have you accomplished in the past year? Knowing yourself and understanding what drives you can help you to set realistic and achievable goals for the year ahead.
- Be Specific: It’s essential to be specific when setting your resolutions. Instead of saying, “I want to lose weight,” set a specific goal like “I want to lose three pounds a month.” This will give you a clear target to work towards and make it easier to track your progress.
- Set Realistic Goals: While it’s great to dream big, setting achievable goals is also essential. Setting unrealistic goals such as doing the Iron Man Contest and you have never ran a 5K can lead to disappointment and frustration, and may cause you to give up on your resolutions altogether. Consider your abilities and resources when setting your goals and ensure they are attainable within the given time frame.
- Write it Down: There is power in writing down your goals. When you write something down, it becomes more concrete and holds you accountable. Write your resolutions in your smartphone reminder or on a piece of paper and put them where you will see them often, like on your desk or fridge. This will serve as a reminder of what you’re working towards.
- Break it Down: Sometimes, big goals can be overwhelming. Having smaller, more manageable steps makes them less daunting and more achievable. For example, if your resolution is to run a triathlon, start by setting a goal to run 5k and swim 1 mile by the end of the month, then gradually increase the distance each month.
- Find a Partner to Hold You Accountable: Having someone to hold you accountable who has the same goals can increase your chances of achieving your goals. Find a friend or family member who shares similar goals or interests and make each other accountable. You can check in with each other weekly to go over your progress and offer support and encouragement.
- Celebrate Small Victories: Don’t wait until you’ve reached your end goal to celebrate. Celebrating small victories while working to achieve your goals can give you more motivation and a sense of accomplishment. For example, if you aim to read 12 books a year, celebrate every time you finish a book.
- Be Flexible: Life happens, and sometimes, our goals may need to be adjusted. It’s important to be flexible and adapt to any changes that may come along the way. If a particular strategy or method is not working, don’t be afraid to try something else. The important thing is to keep moving forward and not let setbacks discourage you.
- Constantly Track Your Progress: Keeping track of your progress is crucial in achieving your resolutions. It lets you see how far you’ve come and motivates you to keep going. Use a tracking app or journal to monitor your progress and make any necessary adjustments.
- Don’t Give Up: Lastly, don’t give up. It’s natural to have setbacks and moments of self-doubt, but staying focused and pushing toward your goals is important. Remember why you set these resolutions in the first place and envision how achieving them will make you feel.
In conclusion, setting and achieving New Year resolutions may seem daunting, but with these 10 proven strategies will increase your chances of success. Remember to reflect on yourself, set specific and realistic goals, break them down, find support, celebrate small victories, be flexible, track your progress, and most importantly, don’t give up. With hard work, determination, and perseverance, you can achieve your New Year’s resolutions and have a successful and fulfilling year ahead!