How to help your New Year’s resolution stick

Ann Hamm

Chances are at some time in your life you’ve made a New Year’s resolution — and then broken it. This year stop the cycle of resolving to make change and then not following through. Why? We set forth unrealistic expectations, burn out, then go back to our old, unhealthful ways within a month. If your resolution is to take better care of yourself and get healthy, you will have a much better year if your resolution sticks. Here are six tips to help you get started.

1. Be realistic

The surest way to fall short of your goal is to make your goal unattainable. Strive for goal that is attainable.

2. Write it out

Write all your goals down and how you want to obtain those goals. It may help to see a list of items on paper to keep your motivation strong. Develop this list over time, and ask others to contribute to it. Keep your list with you and refer to it when you need help keeping your resolve.

3. Talk about it; Buddy

Don’t keep your resolution a secret. Tell friends and family members who will be there to support your resolve to change yourself for the better or improve your health. The best case scenario is to find a buddy who shares your New Year’s resolution and motivate each other.

4. Reward yourself

Celebrate your success by treating yourself to something you enjoy that doesn’t contradict your resolution.

5. Don’t beat yourself up

Obsessing over the occasional slip won’t help you achieve your goal. Do the best you can each day and take one day at a time.

6. Keep trying

If you have totally run out of steam when it comes to keeping your resolution by mid-February, don’t despair. Start over again! Recommit yourself for 24 hours. You can do anything for 24 hours. The 24 hour increments will soon build on each other and, before you know it, you will be back on track.

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