Well, folks, it’s January 3rd, 2012. We are already three days into the New Year.
Most people, by this point in time, have already come up with their New Year’s Resolutions (to lose weight! to pray more! to read more! to be thankful more!) and are already three days into working on seeing them through.
The sad reality about these resolutions is that only 10% of them will be fulfilled. For you math majors out there, that means that 90% of all New Year’s Resolutions will fail.
Are you one of these people? Do you set goals at the beginning of each year only to neglect to achieve them or, like yours truly last year, simply forget what they were? Don’t sweat it. You’re not alone.
Here are some things to keep in mind when deciding on your New Year’s resolutions.
1. give yourself a deadline.
Okay, okay. This may seem redundant but, “by the end of the year,” is often times too vague to meet. Before you know it, December 31st is here and you’re kicking yourself in the butt for missing out again. If your resolution is to run three miles, register for a 5k in July. If your goal is to go down a pants size, give yourself a deadline of September or October, a month you’re sure to need new jeans.
2. have a measurable goal.
Resolutions like “losing weight” or “eating healthier” are kind of hard to measure. If your goal is the former, change it to something like, “I resolve to lose enough pounds to get to a healthy BMI,” or, “I resolve to lose seven pounds in order to round out the number on the scale.” If your goal is the latter, try changing it to, “I resolve to eat three servings of vegetables and two servings of fruit each day.” Narrowing your goals makes them so much easier to grasp.
3. tell people about it.
Last year I made five New Year’s Resolutions and didn’t tell a soul about any of them. It probably shouldn’t come as a surprise, but I didn’t meet any of my goals. There’s a reason support groups work — when you have a group of people you can trust with your aspirations, they’ll hold you accountable until you see them through (and even after!) And, as an added bonus, if you tell a girlfriend about your goal, it might be one she’s had for a while and hasn’t been ready to tackle on her own. You can be someone else’s cheerleader at the same time!
4. don’t forget about grace.
Changing things in your life can be tough. If you slip up one day or two, don’t get discouraged. Persistence is key — pick yourself up and dust your shoulders off and try again the next day. Even if you continue this pattern all the way to next year, that’s okay. Remember — just trying is half the battle.
What are your New Year’s Resolutions?