A Simple Guide to Keeping Your New Years Resolutions

“May all your troubles last as long as your New Year’s resolution”. A funny but also kind of sad statement, right? None of us want our troubles to last long, and more often than not our New Year’s resolutions don’t make it past January. In fact, a study conducted by Strava indicates that January 12th is the day that most people give up! But did you know it also only takes 66 days for a new habit to become automatic? That’s a little more two months! Are you prepared to put in the work? Not only will it take a short amount of time, but this simple guide will help you keep your New Years resolution.

Most common mistakes when making New Years resolutions

First Mistake: Trying to accomplish your goal “by the end of the year”

Although it’s great to have one big goal to achieve, what’s even more fulfilling is actually achieving milestones along the way. Not only is this a great way to get started, but it is something that you can change and increase/decrease throughout your journey. This will ensure that you are always working towards a doable goal. Not to mention, setting a goal for the “end of the year” leaves room for procrastination. It’s easier for them to give the excuse “oh I still have a few more months, I can put it off for tomorrow.” This is what we are trying to avoid.

Second Mistake: Trying to start or quit something right away.

For example, if you are trying to start working out, then you’re thinking that you need to be at the gym every day, right? Or if you’re trying to quit smoking, then you need to quit cold turkey, right? Both of those are dead WRONG. Going to the gym every day is only going to make you super sore, have to take a week off for recovery, and make you feel so unmotivated because of the pain you felt that you will never go to the gym again. It’s the same with smoking. If you try to quit by stopping completely instead of taking one step down at a time, you will find the detox to be so harsh, so uncomfortable, and guess what? You’ll be back at it in a week or two. This all goes back to trying to achieve milestones as opposed to making one big goal.

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Third Mistake: Trying to do too many things.

Your life can only balance so many things. So why are you trying to be better at all these new things that you promised yourself on top of trying to maintain your normal home and work life? Take your time. Be easy on yourself. And don’t push yourself too hard or you will only see exhaustion or anxiety bubble to the surface. By knowing these common mistakes, now you are even more prepared to start!

Most Common Resolutions

The most common New Years resolutions are to work out more, quit (insert whatever you’re trying to quit here), and saving or making more money.

Working Out

Gyms see a spike in membership and attendance in January only to see it come back to normal by February. So what you need to do to stay on top of it is simply by making small, achievable goals. Once you complete that first goal, increase your goal a little bit! If you want to run a marathon, then start by making the goal to run 15 minutes at a time. Once you can do that, then maybe change the goal to being able to run a mile in 10 minutes. That will keep you motivated to keep working towards your end goal.

Quitting (insert thing here)

Whether it’s smoking, biting your nails, drinking too much coffee, etc, these are all attainable through milestones. Start with a baby step! If you know you drink 5 cups of coffee in a day, then you’ll want to cut it back to 4 cups a day, but maybe have a cheat day of 5 cups a day once a week. Sooner or later, you’ll find that it will be habit to only have 4 cups a day. Once that habit has formed, then move down the ladder inch by inch. Success is measured through progress! And the more you can progress, the better your chances are of achieving your overall goal.

Saving/Making More Money

This one is a tad harder since the act of saving is not immune to emergencies or random expenses like your car breaking down. It can be hard to save money in these circumstance because you may even have to take out money from your savings to pay for these things. And that’s ok! This resolution shouldn’t be about a certain amount – it should be about the act itself. If you can put ANY amount of money away per month, that’s a win. This can be aided in proper financial management with a useful service such as Evolve Bank and Trust, especially if you’re trying to save for a home.

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In terms of making more money, this is going to require you to continually work harder at your job. Put in those hours, get more one-on-one time with your boss, prove that you are an asset to the business you are in. Maybe your success will be measured in getting more hours at work. I mean, it’s not a pay raise per se, but you are getting more time at work and that’s still technically making more money.

Final thoughts on how to keep your New Years resolution

Overall, you need to remember that it’s the small wins that account for your success. New Year’s resolutions are hard. If they were easy then it wouldn’t be something we, as a society, put such an emphasis on. Only you can hold yourself accountable for your resolutions. Keep yourself to it and don’t cave under the pressure.

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