New Year’s resolutions are all fine and dandy. They give one the opportunity to start the year with a fresh slate, with new goals, and new opportunities.
But let’s face it. Many of us tend to slowly abandon our resolutions as the year wears on. Whether that’s losing weight, getting organized, learning a new skill, saving more money, or what have you, our enthusiasm for the resolution quickly wanes once we realize that we really have to WORK at it.
So, if this sounds like you; perhaps it’s time for a new approach. The idea is to commit yourself to getting better all throughout the year, every day. We’ve gathered up some great alternatives to New Year’s Resolutions that will help you keep your goals on track.
Create A Bucket List (not just for travel!)
Think about all of the things you’d like to accomplish for the year. Some ideas might be to hit a new income goal, to try or prepare a new food, to reconnect with that special someone with whom you’ve lost touch. Whatever it is, write down that list and put it somewhere close. Remind yourself of your bucket list every day.
Develop a Mantra
A mantra is much more empowering than a resolution. You either succeed or fail with a resolution. A mantra becomes a way of life. You want to lose weight? Then your mantra might be something like “I will stop eating when I am just starting to feel full.” Or, “I will only buy the food items I absolutely need.” When you’re shopping for food or eating anything, remind yourself of your mantra. Live it every single day.
Use New Year Prompts
Much like the bucket list above, write down a short list of prompts that will kick-start a series of actions that will shake things up for you a bit. Things you’ve been meaning to do, but just haven’t. Such as:
- One habit you will create
- One habit you will break
- One Individual you want to spend more time with
- One project you will start/finish
- One adventure you will go on
Break it Down into Goals per Month
Instead of one big New Year’s Resolution for the entire year, why not make smaller resolutions (12 of them, to be exact!) that you can tackle each month? The key to success is to choose measurable goals that are specific, not general. For example, instead of saying “I’ll get in the habit of managing my money better this month,” say, “I’ll save $400 this month.” If you keep it short-term and realistic, you are far more likely to achieve that goal.
Celebrate Your Wins
In the middle of the year, around June and July, take stock of what you have done so far. Determine if you are on the right track, or if you need to re-evaluate your list and/or prompts. Are you keeping on track to saving money, for instance? If not, now’s the time to decide if another approach is needed. Don’t give up. And if you ARE on track, give yourself a little reward, such as a lavish dinner with friends, or a short vacation somewhere.
Changing your life one small step at a time is so much more doable that trying to live up to one big New Year’s resolution. Remember, it’s all about baby steps! Staying the course inevitably leads to a happier, healthier you!