This time of year, people start thinking a lot about changes they want to make after the clock hits midnight on the 31st. Typically you will hear vows to lose weight, quit smoking or any number of promises that weren’t fulfilled the year before. This may sound cynical, but the truth is, you rarely hear of someone setting a useful New Year’s goal that they actually accomplish. (Yes husband, I did say useful. Vowing to never set the microwave timer to an even :00 or :30 is not actually useful, even though you have technically accomplished this resolution).
So why do we continue this cycle, year after year? And why do we feel the need to wait until January first to start working on these major, life-transforming goals? My brother recently pointed out that really, we should set our New Year’s resolutions on our birthdays, as that is our personal new year. But again, something as important as quitting smoking or beginning an exercise regimen should not wait until a specific date; those things should be done today, as they could save your life! So to help out a bit, I’ve compiled a list of helpful guidelines to follow when setting your resolution this year. I hope it helps, and I wish you the best of luck in completing your mission!
- Don’t wait – if you have already decided on a resolution for 2017, why not start today? If you aren’t willing to do so, then what is going to change in the next 16 days? I understand that waiting until the first is a symbolic gesture, but as I stated above, many resolutions can greatly affect your life, so get started now!
- Set manageable goals – don’t promise to exercise for 2 hours, seven days a week all 52 weeks of 2017. This is not a reasonable feat; instead, try starting with 3 times a week and increasing as necessary. If you have a vice you want to quit, going cold turkey on January 1st is not going to work for most people. Providing mini-goals for yourself might be a better idea.
- Make it meaningful – if your resolution does not hold special meaning for you, chances are you will not stick to it. Don’t make arbitrary rules for yourself to follow, and don’t choose a resolution that you would be doing either way. Like, say, resolving to continuing hating a certain premier league football coach that resolution or not, you never would have liked anyway. Sorry honey. You’re an easy target.
- Make it quantitative, if possible – vowing to go into work a little earlier is great, but how much earlier? Technically you could arrive at the office at 7:59 and have accomplished your goal, but that’s not going to make a positive change in your life.
- Positivity is ideal – making negative resolutions is not going to start your year off on the right foot. Saying that you will no longer speak to Sharon in accounting because you don’t like the way she laughs might make your life a little more enjoyable. But instead, maybe decide that you will try to find something good in everyone at your office; also makes for an enjoyable life and at the same time is a way to better yourself.
Hopefully these tips will help you find a resolution that will make your 2017 great!