Are you on track with your new year’s resolution?

New Year Fresh Start

A New Year can be a time for new beginnings. New Year’s is traditionally a time of resolution to change one’s life. New Year’s resolutions are one way to make changes in your life. Many people make New Year’s resolutions, but few make a real commitment to them. Here are some tips on how to keep New Year’s resolutions and make lasting positive changes in life.


Plan Ahead

Don’t make your resolution on New Year’s Eve. If you wait until the last minute, your decisions will be based on your mindset on that particular day. Instead, your New Year’s resolution should be planned well before December 31 arrives. If it’s already to late for planning to start January 1st, pick another date. Sometimes the best way to accomplish a New Year’s resolution is to make it at a time of year of your choosing, rather than the one dictated by the calendar.


Small Steps

Don’t ever bite off more than you can chew as this is just a recipe for failure. Choose one major goal or a bunch of small goals but never take on two or more major life-altering changes at once. Keep your focus clear. People are so gung-ho for change this time of the year that they often vow to make several lifestyle modifications at once. Committing to more than one thing is overwhelming; you only have so much willpower and energy to go around. So pick the one habit or behavior you truly want to tweak and make that your project for 2012.


Talk About It

Don’t keep your resolution a secret. Tell friends and family members who will be there to support your resolve to change yourself for the better. This could include calling on a friend for help, practicing positive thinking and self-talk, or reminding yourself how your bad habit affects your life. Telling your friends and family about your resolution offers two advantages: First, they’ll help protect you from potential setbacks. Also, because you won’t want disappoint the people rooting for you; you’ll try harder to adhere to your resolution.


Sticking it out

Life is full of setbacks and letting them defeat you is always bad. Even major setbacks don’t have to mean an end to your efforts. When you experience a setback just shake it off and get back on track. People say they’re going to eat less or they’re going to stop smoking or they’re going to stop drinking. One of the reasons it’s hard to do that is now you’re replacing this behavior with no behavior. So what you need to do is replace a habit with some other behavior. Writing your goal down and keeping it in view makes it feel official and tangible, and therefore you’ll be less likely to break it. Keep the wording short and focused; the clearer it is, the more motivating it will be.


Above all, aim for things that are truly important to you, not what you think you ought to do or what others expect of you.


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