How to Set New Year Resolutions and Keep Them

“New year, new me” ; “I want to run a marathon this year” ; “I want to pick up a new hobby” – sound familiar? These are some of the most common new year resolutions that people make at the beginning of a new year. Unsurprisingly, most resolutions are hastily made and forgotten, until the next year rolls around. The problem is not you, at least most of the time. The problem lies in the resolution itself. Setting your resolution right is as important as keeping them! We share some of our tips on how to set new year resolutions and keep them below!

Choose a Solid Why

Before you choose a resolution, you must first be very clear about why you are setting it. Many of us tend to choose goals to achieve that we don’t feel strongly enough about, or worse, because other people tell us to set it. If your ‘why’ is strong enough, you will be more likely to stick to your goals for longer and achieve them.

This holiday season is a great time for you to reflect on the year that you’ve had. Take some time out for yourself and have a good think on what you want to improve on in the new year and choose a resolution that you really want to achieve.

Be Specific

“I want to read more this year” – this might seem like a regular new year resolution that we’ve all heard. However, this will more likely be abandoned or forgotten within the first few weeks of the year. Why? It is too vague to be achieved.

“I want to read 25 books by the end of the year” – this is a more specific goal that you can remember and will be more likely to stick to, as it makes you more accountable to yourself. It is also more measurable so you can monitor your progress throughout the year, giving you motivation to push forward when you’re nearing your goal.

Plan Your Resolutions

If you fail to plan, you plan to fail – an age-old saying we’ve all heard a million times from our parents, teachers and bosses, but it really does apply here. If you really want to achieve your new year resolutions, you need to take to the time and draft an “action plan”, however that looks like, towards to achieving them.

The end of year break is the perfect time for you to plan your resolutions. You will have the context of the last year you’d lived through and be more motivated to have a fresh start for the new year. This process of drafting an action plan will also allow you to evaluate your own capabilities and circumstances to see how achievable your goals are. You might find yourself going back to the drawing board to rethink and adjust your new year resolutions at this stage.

Seek Support

You will more likely than not feel your motivation waning as the year goes by. This is perfectly normal – you get caught up in the daily grind and have good and bad days. Having a solid support system can help keep you on track and stay motivated. Get a like-minded partner to join you in working towards your goals, and even make it more fun. Explaining what your new year resolutions are to your loved ones or family and ask them to help keep you accountable.

A common mistake that most of us make when setting our new year resolutions is being too ambitious, and then giving up early when we don’t see immediate results. Change is hard, especially when it’s about yourself; it’s important to start small but sure steps towards your goals.

It’s also important to remember that these are not hard and fast rules that you need to achieve at all costs. These resolutions are yours, and yours only. It’s okay to adjust them to your circumstances and abilities along the way.

Show some kindness towards yourself. Setting new year goals should be a process of reflection and excitement, not stress. Don’t feel pressured to set unachievable goals just because you think that’s what is expected of you.