We tend to start a new year with the resolve to change something for the better. Whether it’s quitting a bad habit or starting a good one, or a revamp of your lifestyle, it’s only good if you can maintain it and stay the course. So we’ve got some advice for how to keep your resolutions for the year, and hopefully, also for the decade.
First, go through your resolutions and break them down into milestone goals. If you’re quitting a smoking habit, for example, mark the dates where you’d hit a week, a month, a quarter of a year and so on, with longer intervals as you go. If you want to finish up on a list of books to read, have a mark for pages per day or number of books finished overall. The key is to have a way to “see” the road to the end you want to achieve so it doesn’t feel like it’s taking too long or unrealistic. Having “mini-objectives” or “sub-goals” can help you go a long way.
Second, have a regular review of your progress. Set some time aside in regular intervals to see how behind or ahead you are in meeting your milestones. This helps to reinforce your resolve since it makes you more conscious of your decision to keep at it. Even for “quitting” bad habits, a mini-update can be the push you need to get to that next marked date you need to get to. This is especially helpful for resolutions that aren’t time-based like “I want to be able to do 100 push-ups straight” or “I want to be able to focus on work more” as your check would definitely help in cheering you on to how close you are to your end goal or milestone. It would be better to have a journal or means to record your progress as you’d have something to look back to.
Third, have a means of reinforcing your resolve. Although tracking your progress can be the reward itself, sometimes having a separate reward for yourself would be better. Try listing it ahead of time and be as specific or vague as you want. Just make sure your rewards would be progressively better or realistic to maintain, to prevent disappointing yourself when the time comes to claim it.
Finally, don’t be too hard on yourself. Some things may be hard to achieve in a year, so don’t be overly pressured to finish a fitness goal or quit a bad habit right away. You need to remember that the human factor is important, and that you can always adjust your timeline if need be. Push yourself but don’t force your way through something as it may attach some negative baggage instead of reinforcing your resolve. There’s always next year, and what counts is that you don’t regret how far you’ve come so far.
2020 is a new year and the start of a new decade, which makes it so easy to count your progress as you go along. So now is a good time to start work and stop putting it off. Good luck and have an awesome decade.