When New Year’s Eve comes around each year, we all start making this list of plans for the year to come, but more often than not, we don’t achieve them. So how do we set goals that we can achieve? Well, here are 15 top tips for how to set and keep your New Year’s resolutions!
1. Create a measurable goal
If you set a goal like ‘get healthier’, or ‘be happy’, you can’t really measure it. Some days it’ll feel like you’re right on track, and then other days it’ll feel like everything’s gone wrong! In order to be able to achieve a goal, you need to be able to see it clearly and measure your progress.
2. Set action steps
If you’re setting big resolutions, like reaching a goal weight, then make sure you decide how you’re going to get there. It’s great to plan to lose 3 stone, but if you haven’t decided what you’re willing to do to lose it, it’s less likely to happen.
3. Plan for obstacles
In the first few weeks of the year, it may feel like nothing can stop you. But eventually, you’ll get tired, or things will come up. In which case, you’re more likely to be able to succeed if you plan for these. Decide what you’re going to do about your ‘gym 4 times a week’ resolution if the gyms shut again, for example.
4. You don’t need to start on the 1st
Whilst we call them New Year’s resolutions, it doesn’t have to start on the 1st of January. A lot of us are still in the festive spirit at this point, and so feeling motivated and inspired can be difficult.
5. Track your progress
Each month, or week, however, is best for you, take stock of how you’re doing. If you’re aiming to read a book each week, how many did you read that month? Mark it down! That way, you can see physical progress. It’ll help keep you motivated.
6. Don’t fear failure
If you are someone who hates failure – try and keep that out of your mind. Failing doesn’t mean you won’t achieve the goal! If you eat all of your Easter eggs in April but had aimed to stop eating chocolate this year – just draw a line under it and start again. There’s no reason to throw it all away!
7. Make sure your resolution is doable
Realism is hard. But we all know that you aren’t going to go on a 9k run every morning. Especially if you’re planning on starting on the 1st of January. If you set yourself up to fail, you’re going to lose motivation very quickly.
8. Find a community
If you’re someone who thrives with support, then look online for groups and clubs that are similar to your goals. Want to take up running? Join a running group! Then it feels like you’re being held accountable.
9. Reward yourself
One reason people fail their resolutions is that a year is a very long time to wait for a reward! It can be exhausting. So instead, set up a reward system. If you’re looking to go on a run every Wednesday, every month that you achieve it, reward yourself with a drink, or some goodies!
10. Try and try again
If for some reason you are struggling, or maybe you miss your goal one week, don’t be hard on yourself! Sometimes, life gets in the way, or you’re just not up for it. And that’s okay. Just take a breather, put a line under it, and carry on.
11. Write down your goal and put it where you can see it
If you’ve got a whiteboard, or even just a post-it note and a wall, then write down your goal and stick it somewhere! If you have to see it every day, you’re more likely to try and do it.
12. Ask your friends to encourage you
Similarly, if your friends and family are aware of your goals, they can gently nudge you in the right direction. They can also make sure they don’t get in the way. If you want to drink less and they know, then they can make sure not to ask you to the pub.
13. Break goals down into smaller steps
As well as setting up a plan, if you break your goal into smaller steps, you can not only reward yourself easier, but the goal is suddenly less daunting.
14. Set yourself up for success
By about March time, you are likely going to want to falter. But one way to make sure you don’t, set yourself up for success. If you’re looking to get better grades, then be sure to get yourself organised. If you’re trying to gym, keep your gym bag packed. Make it easier to succeed.
15. Hold yourself accountable
Whilst other things in life can get in the way of achieving our goals, we are to blame sometimes too. So if you do falter, don’t instantly throw the blame at your friends or anything like that. Be real, and consider where you could’ve made a better decision.
So there you have it. 15 tried and tested tips to help you make 2021 into your year. Make it better than this year has been!