Your New Year’s Resolution: Stick to it!

Every year, so many of us make New Year’s resolutions that we think sound great at the time, only to find ourselves cheating and giving up by January 7th. Escape that mentality and make your New Year’s resolutions REALLY work for you! Here are a compilation of tips to help you successfully shed those pounds, save that cash, stick that tumbling pass, or whatever your personal goal may be!

1) Focus on a single goal for now- We’re all SO eager to improve our lives in all different ways, but for your New Year’s resolution, focus on the MOST important one for now. When that’s accomplished, you can try to move on to a different one, but too many at the same time may be overwhelming. It’s hard enough to change ONE habit- imagine multiple!

2) Make your goal specific and concrete- It’s MUCH easier to attain a goal if you have some sort of measurement of success. You want to save money for something special? Figure out the total amount you want to save, and break the amount up weekly. Save exactly that amount each week, and you’ll get there! Looking to get a new skill? Give yourself a time frame you want to have it by. A big competition or try outs in April/May would be a great time to set your deadline.

3) Tell everyone you know- The more people that know, the more likely you are to keep up with your resolution. After all, you want to brag about how great you’re doing when friends ask- not disappoint everyone by telling them you gave it up.

4) Keep it written down someplace you will see it often- Keep the words concise, but write it down on a note and keep it somewhere that you see it often- next to your computer, on your phone background, on your planner, wherever. This will make you feel like the goal is official and you won’t break it.

5) Allow a cheat or a mess up every once in a while- I know that sounds contradictory, but if you mess up, be okay with it. It’s hard to keep up with for an extended period of time, but people often feel defeated if they mess it up once and then they quit. That’s the last thing you want. If you cheat one day, oh well! Get back on track and forget about it!

6) Reward yourself for your hard work with things that do not affect your resolution- If your goal is to lose 5 pounds by March, go buy a hot new top to reward yourself for getting there instead of indulging in ice cream and pizza for a night!

7) It doesn’t HAVE to start January 1st- If there’s a goal you’re excited about, but it won’t come until later on (perhaps you want to change an attitude or behavior come tryouts next season?), don’t let it stop you! Keep it in your mind and still follow the other steps, but make sure you’re ready for it when you say you’re going to start!

8) Keep a log for yourself- If you continue to write about your progress, you’ll realize how close you’re getting and you’ll want to keep going. Track your calories, keep a practice log for improving your skills, keep a balance of your bank account, etc!

9) Plan small celebrations for yourself- It’s easier to hit smaller goals, so schedule small goals within your big goal, and reward yourself when you hit them! If your full goal is to save $1,000 in 2012, reward yourself with something small every time you hit an additional $200!

10) WANT IT FOR YOURSELF- DON’T make a New Year’s resolution that you don’t want for yourself deep down, but maybe that someone else wants for you. It’ll just make you resent whatever it is you’re trying for, because you’ll think of it as a chore to please someone else rather than changing something that you’re passionate about.



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