You’ve probably been thinking about a new year’s resolution for the last month or so. Maybe you want to lose some weight, make some money, kick a bad habit, learn the harmonica, etc. Whatever your goal may be, there is always the issue of sticking to it. Several studies have shown that about 40% of Americans make a resolution each year, but only 8% of them actually succeed. So how can you stick your resolution? Here are some tips.
How to Stick to Your New Year’s Resolution:
- Don’t Aim Too High. It may sound pessimistic, but many people set huge goals for their resolution. These people are setting themselves up for failure with such lofty goals. The key to an achievable resolution is to make it something realistic… something you can see yourself actually doing. Don’t expect to win the Mr. Universe competition if you’ve never picked up a weight. That doesn’t mean you can’t reach your goal. Just set a goal that you can reach.
- Make It Specific. The more broad and vague your resolution is, the less likely it is that you can achieve it. You need a specific goal to work towards. “Losing weight” or “making more money” are not specific enough. Identify a specific action with a defined result that you want to complete. “Make more money” could become “obtain a new skill that will help my career.” Then you can find a workshop or professional certification course to obtain that skill. Does it guarantee more money? No. But it a specific goal that you can achieve.
- Measure Your Progress. You have a whole year to stick to your resolution. This is a marathon, not a sprint. A long-term goal needs target goals and deadlines to make sure you stay on track. Set up targets every few months to make sure you are sticking to your resolution. Track your progress and you are far more likely to reach your goal.
Have a fun, safe New Year’s Eve, and a happy, healthy New Year!
*Bonus: Want some help setting your financial goals for 2014? Check out ACCC’s Financial Calculators.