How to make a successful New Year’s resolution

Did you succeed with a resolution this year? The statistics provided by the Statistic Brain Research Institute’s study on resolution habits makes it safe to assume that you didn’t. That’s alright, you are in the majority. Only 8% of people claim to be successful at achieving them. So why are only a small percentage of people able to complete their resolutions while the rest fail? It all comes back to how you develop them.

Make them specific

Vague resolutions like “save more money,” or “lose weight” are very hard to stick to. The more defined you make it, the easier it will be. Instead of “save more money,” why not say “save $200 more a month.” Don’t say you want to lose weight, say you are going to go to the gym and run every Tuesday and life weights on Thursdays.

Make them realistic

My example above of saving $200 a month might not be a possibility for a large number of people reading this. That is fine. Know your limits and set your goals within them. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t push yourself, but find a balance with what is possible.

Give them value

If your resolution is to save more money and you create a realistic, well defined plan to get there, the next step is understanding your reasoning. Why did you want to save more money this year? Perhaps you are trying to put a down payment on a house by 2018, or maybe you are putting it all into your retirement savings. Whatever your reasoning may be, always keep it close.

Tell someone

The most powerful form of motivation on a task comes from being accountable for its competition. When you are at work you have both coworkers and bosses keeping you accountable. Give someone close to you the responsibility of holding you accountable by letting them know what you want to accomplish. I personally would suggest a friend that loves poking fun at your failures for the added motivation.