The New Year
Many people use the end of December to reflect on the year and set new goals to be their best self for the upcoming year. However, creating overwhelming and unrealistic New Year’s resolutions only increases stress and anxiety. This is often what leads to resolutions not being kept much further than February or March. To make this year different, we have collected tips from The American Psychological Association on how to make your New Year’s Resolutions stick.
Tips To Help Your New Year’s Resolutions Stick
- Start Small: “Setting small, attainable goals throughout the year, instead of a singular, overwhelming goal on January 1 can help you reach whatever it is you strive for,” says psychologist Lynn Bufka, PhD. If your goal is to exercise more, strive to exercise 3-4 days a week, rather 7. After several weeks of reaching your 3-4 days of exercise goal, you will feel accomplished and motivated to move forward.
- Change One Behavior at a Time: Unhealthy behaviors develop over the course of time. Thus, replacing unhealthy behaviors with healthy ones does take time. Research shows it can take anywhere from 2-8 months for a behavior to become a habit. Don’t let that overwhelm you, though. What is important is that you recognize a lifestyle change needs to be made and you are working towards it, one day at a time.
- Talk About It: Tell your family and friends about your New Year’s Resolutions. This not only makes you more accountable for your goals, but it also gives you a support system. You could even consider joining a support group. Having someone to share your struggles and successes with makes your journey to a healthier lifestyle that much easier and less intimidating.
- Don’t Be Too Hard On Yourself: It is completely normal to make minor missteps on your journey to change. Research shows that a few missteps have no measurable impact on your long-term habits, so don’t give up! Figure out what strategy works best for you to get back on track, and keep moving forward.
Following these tips will help you keep your New Year’s resolutions throughout the year, as well as help you incorporate any healthy behavior into your everyday life. Visit the American Psychological Association for more information!