New Year, New Resolutions

2016 is finally here. This is the perfect time to change your routine, start good habits, create new goals, and reinvent yourself. Coming up with your resolutions is the easy part, but starting and keeping them is the hard part. Here are some tips to get you started and keep you focused on your goal.


TIP #1: Think of your resolutions before the ball drops, and be serious about them.

There are basic resolutions that everyone says they’ll take on: eating healthy, going to the gym, and studying more are just a few. If you choose one of these, by all means, do so, but make sure these are actual things you want to do and want to change. If you are not serious about actually taking on these tasks, it’ll be harder for you to achieve your goal. Don’t waste your time pretending to want something you actually don’t care about. Think about why your resolution is important to you, and how much you really want to make this change. Think about how it will positively affect you and your future. This way, you convince yourself that achieving this is beneficial and you are more likely to take your resolution more seriously.


TIP #2: Start small, and short term.

The best way to make a transition is to ease yourself into it. You don’t want to start right off the bat with trying to achieve your main goal because it’s harder to do and is a process. Baby steps are key to you gradually working towards your goal. Break it down into short term goals that are easier to accomplish, and make a habit of achieving those goals repeatedly. For example, if your resolution is to eat healthier, break it down into eating a healthy snack in between meals, first, and once you accomplish that, you can move along to eating a healthy lunch 3 times a week, the whole week, and so on. If your goal is to study more, start by reviewing your class notes on the weekend, then every other day, then every day before homework. This is a great way for you to accomplish your goal little by little until it becomes a habit.  


TIP #3: Make a game plan… Plan ahead of time.

You don’t want to start anything without being organized first. Think of how you plan on achieving your goal, and create a step by step process (tip#2), that will be easy for you to follow.  Once you do this, you won’t be starting your resolutions blindfolded, and you’ll have an idea of how your process will go.


TIP #4: List your resolutions, and keep them where your eyes are the most.

You don’t want to forget your goals, or ignore them, because then you won’t achieve them. Write a list of your goals and keep them everywhere you look the most. Keep a copy on your fridge, your mirror, in your locker, and anywhere else you look. Take a picture of the list and make it your screensaver on your phone, tablet, and computer. You can even make it your binder/notebook cover. The more you see it, the more it will motivate  you to achieve your goal (or haunt you to achieve it).


TIP #5: Get a friend to work with you.

Everything’s better with a friend. If you have the same resolution as a friend, working with them will make the process more enjoyable for both of you. You can monitor each other and make sure that you stay on track and no one is cheating. Achieving your goal with a friend will not only make the process fun, but it will also bring you both closer together and create great memories.


TIP #6:  Find some inspiration.

You have to imagine what how you want your goal to turn out. There has to be some image or idea in your head that will result from your achieving your resolution, and inspiration will help give you that idea or image to motivate you. Go on instagram, pinterest or google, and find some motivational quotes and pictures and people to inspire you. Having an idea to base your success and hard work off of is a great form of motivation.


TIP #7: Tell everyone around you what your resolutions are.

If you tell people what your goals are, you are more likely to go through with them because you told everyone what they were. I know it’s weird, but it’s true. Talking about your goals makes you more likely to achieve them. It makes you feel more obligated and accountable. It is also a good way to get your friends involved in your process even if they are not working on the resolution with you. They can help hold you accountable for your actions if you cheat or go off track.


*WARNING: Telling everyone that you will do something and actually doing something are two different things. Once you tell your friends and family, stick to your words. Don’t let their approval give you a premature sense of completeness or accomplishment.


TIP #8: Start on January 2nd.

It’s totally understandable, in fact, potentially better, if you start your resolution journey on January 2nd. If you partied or stayed up the night before January 1st, you will most likely be too exhausted to start and be serious about your resolution process, causing you to mess up or give up before you truly even begin. January 1st is best left as a day of rest/recovery, but it’s helpful if you use it to prep a little for the beginning of your process.


TIP #9: Believe that you can achieve your goal(s).

At the end of the day, the only person stopping you from doing anything is yourself. You have to “believe that you can achieve.” It’s never easy changing your habits and trying to accomplish a goal, but that’s what makes it even greater when you succeed. Even if there is nothing in the world to motivate you, your spirit can keep you strong and positive. Don’t think that one obstacle should stop you from achieving your goal. Don’t let anything stop you, and always keeping going. You will always be stronger than your struggles in this process, and when you achieve your goal then you will see just how amazing you are.


TIP #10: Reward yourself.

Once you achieve your goals, rewarding yourself is practically mandatory. After all your hard work, a reward besides actually achieving your goal is something to add to your achievement. However, you can also reward yourself along the way, to keep you going as well. As suggested earlier, if you break up your main goal into multiple short term tasks, then rewarding yourself after achieving your short term tasks is something to look forward to. Even if it’s something small, it’s a good way to keep you moving forward in your resolution journey.


I hope you all have a wonderful new year, and an amazing and successful resolution journey. All the best!

By Baaba Annan

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