Did you know that over half of Americans fail their resolution while still in the month of January?
While many Americans abandon their hope-filled New Year’s resolutions by February or March, setting goals for the new year remains a beloved pastime, which can be traced all the way back to the days of ancient Babylonia.
To make sure you’re one of the more successful resolution-makers, we recommend thinking ahead and making a plan to stick with it.
Start on a Monday
People commit to their goals more fiercely after a major benchmark like New Year’s Day. If you have a history of making resolutions and then giving up a few weeks later, wait for a Monday. It’s the most popular day of the week for starting diets and stopping smoking, studies show.
Ditch the Back-Up Plan
In a series of new studies, people who were told to think up a Plan B were less likely to attain their main objective. Researchers suspect that having backup goals may make failure feel somehow more acceptable.
Try “New Month’s Resolutions”
“New Month’s Resolutions” break your larger goal into smaller more manageable goals by focusing on 30 or 31 day intervals.
Don't be Negative
Many people’s resolutions are a criticism of themselves – such as wanting to kick a nasty habit or change their attitude. According to psychologists at Harvard University, if a resolution is a criticism, you’re less likely to follow through. Instead of focusing on the problem or the habit you are wanting to change, focus on the benefits you will reap along the way.
Seeking out a "resolution" buddy can help you stick with the resolution. A buddy can assist you in avoiding getting negative about yourself or your slips, which will help you stick to the goal longer. It also provides an extra layer of accountability.
Track Your Progress
Throughout your process of attaining your goal, make sure to record every accomplishment you make along the way, no matter how small. When you are feeling a little less than motivated and can’t seem to find the light at the end of the tunnel, take a moment to look back and appreciate the how far you have already come.