With a new year comes a new beginning. It’s a time to start over and attempt to become a better you. I love it. The year 2013 is sure to be a good one. Why? Here’s why.
One of the best things about a new year is it offers the chance to make new resolutions or even re-commit to the ones we didn’t quite hit in 2012. It’s not often we get a do-over. Embrace it.
Social media is a great way to stay in touch with friends and family. This year I took to it to see what their plans were for the New Year. I was surprised at what I observed in the news feed. Sprinkled between the messages of hope and proclamations to worry less, live more, save money and be healthier, were critics of those who make resolutions.
I read a lot of, “What’s the use of making a resolution you won’t keep?” or “I plan to be the same as I am now this year,” and the occasional, “Don’t waste your time with resolutions.” They have a right to feel how they want to feel. After all, they may have tried making resolutions in the past and it didn’t work out for them. And that’s OK, but don’t knock those of us who aspire to be better or who want to give previous resolutions another go. There is nothing wrong with setting goals. That said, when we set goals, we have to work hard to achieve them.
I read an article on goal-setting-guide.com that can help those of us who haven’t given up on resolutions stick to them throughout the year. The article suggested five things to note as we make resolutions and attempt to tackle them. The first is to make the resolution specific. While many want to be more proactive in their fitness journeys in 2013 – me included – we should target a specific weight-loss/gain amount to help guide our journeys. The same can be applied to saving money in the new year. It’s easy to say, “I want to be more frugal,” but another thing to say, “I want to consciously put away $20 from each paycheck to help me save more.” It’s all much easier said than done.
Other suggestions from the article include making our resolutions known to others, making them measurable by time and making them fun and rewarding. Of the five suggestions, I like the advice to measure it and be specific about what you’re trying to achieve. I live in a deadline-oriented world and saying to myself, “I’d like to lose 10 pounds by May 1” might stick in my memory more than just saying I want to lose weight by May. That’s just me. Specifics do make a big difference.
About 45 percent of Americans usually make New Year’s resolutions, according to the Journal of Clinical Psychology (University of Scranton). About 38 percent never make them and about 8 percent are successful in achieving their resolutions, data shows. It can be hard to maintain resolutions but they are still worth making. If nothing else, they can be rewarding if achieved or offer new lessons along the way. Stick with them.