How To: Follow Through on Your New Year's Resolutions

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If you're anything like me, you may be thinking what resolutions? I don't know what you're talking about... But I'm here to tell you that it's not over yet! Just because you may have fallen off the resolution wagon doesn't mean that you should give up on them all together, my dear! 

It's easy to go a week or two without doing any active work on all those goals and changes you decided to make this year, and it's also completely okay to take a little break. BUT a break is not forever, and sooner or later, you'll have to get back into things.

Check out the tips below to help with committing to all of your new year, new me goals!  

1. The Buddy System

There's a couple of different ways that resolutions with a partner can work--both of which operate on the idea that you are not the only person to hold yourself accountable. 

Maybe you and your best friend are trying to hit the gym a few times a week together, or quit biting your nails, or perhaps having more family meals at the kitchen table. If you and your pal have the same resolution, you can help to remind and encourage each other, and you can actually engage in the activities together. Everything is more fun with a few friends!

An alternative solution involves mutual moral support for different goals. You and your friend/sibling/partner create a supportive alliance so that you can nag her about swearing less and she can slap your hand away from your biting mouth. What fun!

2. Baby Steps 

Making a big change in your habits is difficult, and many resolutions require a lifestyle shift. Whether you're trying to eat-in more, spend more time with family, or learn French, you're going to have to change your current habits to be successful with your new ones.  

Making changes is hard, so even if your resolution is a much bigger shift, start with something small that you can change every single day. Maybe you're going to make your bed, or set out your clothing the night before, or do your dishes immediately after you use them. Whatever you choose--make it manageable. 

Over time, add more small changes to your day-to-day task list, and watch your entire lifestyle transition. As you're making little changes, start focusing on the big one(s) too!

3. Write it Down 

There are loads of small things you can do to encourage yourself every day, and communicating with yourself is a great way to start! My three preferred methods of self-communication are reminder notes, journal entries, and my planner. 

  • Make a few sticky-notes with important tasks, bits of encouragement, and gentle reminders for around the house. After a while, they'll start to blend in, so rewrite them on different colors and put them in a new place!

  • Write a to-do list for every day or week. Put small things like laundry as well as bigger things like be nice to strangers. Cross things off when they're finished.

  • Start a journal to keep track of your thoughts and feelings as you live and grow, but don't put too much pressure on it. It's okay if you don't have time to write every day, or even every week. But writing to yourself is a great introspective tool.

  • Lastly, get a planner, or use your phone to organize your tasks and responsibilities. Physically writing things out has a therapeutic quality for me, but just having all of your plans organized into one place will make you feel much more on top of things.

4. Don't Quit

As is mentioned at the beginning of this post, it's easy to break our New Year's Resolutions once we take a few days or weeks off. Rather than give up after a period of inactivity, just start fresh. 

The New Year isn't the only time to make a big change--in fact it may not even be the best time for each individual. Revisit your goals every month, and even if you haven't done a thing towards them by June--start there! You've still got half a year to change your life!

5. Remember That You're Human

At the end of the day, we must remember not to put too much pressure on ourselves. If your plans for change aren't going as well as you had hoped, that's okay! No one will ever be perfect, and sometimes a monumental change is a little too much to hold on to.

Don't be discouraged by failure; think of failure as a new starting point. If this isn't your year in one way, it's bound to be in another. Look for the changes that you're making without even realizing, and try to encourage those! Grow naturally, and enjoy the struggle a little. Because if change wasn't a bit of a struggle, what would be the point of it all anyway? 

Tell us how your personal growth is coming along! 

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