The start of a new year represents hope, motivation and new beginnings. It’s nearly impossible not to get swept up in the excitement of a clean slate — which probably explains why New Year’s resolutions are so popular. Yet, according to U.S. News,80 percent of resolutions fail by the second week of February.
So, how can you make a resolution that stands the test of time? We’ve got five tips to help your new habits stick in 2019.
1. Break it down
It’s easy to make the big sweeping proclamation of what you want in the new year, but it’s a lot harder to get yourself on the right path to achieving it. That’s why breaking down your resolution into an actionable plan can give you the direction you need to really make headway on your goals. For instance, rather than resolving to finally write that novel in 2019, pick specific habits you want to adopt to help you achieve your goal, like writing every day for 30 minutes.
2. Get a buddy
And speaking of accountability, sharing your resolution with a friend can help keep you on track. Make a plan to check in with each other on your goals so you’ll feel accountable to someone other than yourself. Plus, you’ll have a built in cheerleader to help celebrate your successes as they come.
3. Put a positive spin on it
“Negative” resolutions that require giving something up are much more challenging to keep than resolutions that add something to your life. For instance, rather than giving up all desserts, instead make a goal to add more vegetables to your diet. Making a positive goal is easier because you’re less likely to feel deprived — and you might find that filling up on vegetables makes you less interested in that post-dinner cookie.
4. Set yourself up for success
Don’t be afraid to embrace what motivates you. Research has shown thatwearing cute workout clothes makes people more likely to hit the gym, so consider this permission to start shopping.
5. Make it sustainable
If your resolution is too extreme, you might find yourself unable to sustain it long enough to create a new habit. Rather than approaching your resolution as an immediate and jarring change, think of ways to achieve a similar outcome in a way that is sustainable to your lifestyle. For instance, if you want to save more money in 2019, start with allocating a small amount from your budget, then build over time as you get used to the constrictions.
With these tips, you can resolve to make 2019 your best year yet. So, tell us: what resolutions are you making?
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