How to keep your New Year’s resolutions all year long

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Every January, approximately a third of Americans resolve to make themselves better in some way. However, studies show that 75% of Americans only stick to their New Year’s resolutions for a week, while a mere 46% are still on track six months later. So what’s the trick to keeping your New Year’s resolutions all year long? Here are a few tips:

Be Specific. How many of us have made a New Year’s resolution to lose weight or get healthy? While these are great goals, they are a bit too vague. Setting goals that are measurable and specific make them easier to work towards. If your New Year’s resolution is to lose weight, set a goal of losing a specific amount of weight by a certain period of time. Or if you want to get in shape, create achievable, measurable goals like being able to do a pull-up within 100 days or running a six minute mile within six months.

Have a plan. Now that you have a specific goal in mind, it’s time to come up with your game plan. Let’s use the example of running a six minute mile within six months. Maybe you start by jogging with a friend twice a week. After a month, maybe you increase that to three times a week. Remember, a goal without a plan is just a wish.

Make time. How many of us complain that we don’t have enough time to do things, yet somehow we always find time to binge watch our favorite TV shows on Netflix? Are your excuses more important than your dreams? Just like we set aside time to run errands or spend time with friends, set aside time to work on your goals.  

Grab a friend. Working towards your New Year’s resolution with a friend or partner can help you stay on track because they can hold you accountable. You can inspire, encourage, and motivate each other; plus, it will make the experience more fun.

Take a breather. Inevitably, throughout the year our time and energy become more limited. We stop putting in as much effort, and excuses seem to be everywhere: “I’m too tired,” “I just want to sleep,” “It’s okay, I’ll just skip today.” This is completely normal, and it’s okay to allow yourself some cheat days – remember, we’re only human. Just make sure a cheat day stays a cheat day and not a cheat month or cheat year.  

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