It’s that time again and, just like everyone else, I’ve made my list of resolutions for the new year. For as long as I can remember I’ve had the same three goals on every list I’ve ever made. I start January bound and determined to conquer my goals, and then a couple weeks later I lose my motivation. Before I know it, my bad habits have become a part of my everyday life again. Do you have any tricks or suggestions to help me stick to my goals this year?
— Lisa from Sterling, Ill.
You’re not alone! I’ve made resolutions doomed for failure — like learning something new. Every year I have dreams about learning a new foreign language or playing a musical instrument. My intentions are there, but I usually get as far as looking for an instructor and that’s it! So don’t feel bad. Some resolutions are difficult to stick with, but no matter how hard they are, they can be accomplished. Here are a few tips to help you succeed in reaching your goals:
• Write your resolution on a piece of paper where you can see it every day. Be specific and have realistic expectations. Instead of saying you want to lose weight, say you want to lose 10 pounds. The clearer you are, the better chance you will have of reaching your goal. Review your resolution constantly so it is fresh in your mind.
• Use a buddy system. Find a friend who has the same goal and work together. I have found being accountable to someone else helps me tremendously.
• Set a start date and a deadline — it’ll help you stay focused. Not every resolution has to start on Jan. 1.
• It’s important to be in the right frame of mind when tackling a difficult task. You have to believe you can do it and that you absolutely have the willpower to achieve your goals.