New Years resolutions are easy to make and easy to break. If you’re an older adult, it’s likely that you’ve made dozens of resolutions over the years. Perhaps there were some resolutions that you kept and others that you broke. Psychologist and author Richard Wiseman reports that only 52% of people who make resolutions believed that they could keep them. Even more surprisingly, only 12% succeeded in keeping their resolutions at all. As you reflect on previous years, what were the barriers that kept you away from achieving your goals? What were the strengths that helped you fulfill your goals? If you’re committed to being part of the 12% this year, read below for some tips on how to make realistic resolutions and keep them throughout the year.
Write down your resolutions using clear, specific, measurable objectives. A resolution to “be healthier” is not as powerful as a resolution to “attend jazzercise class every Monday and Wednesday”. Hang your resolution somewhere in your home, preferably in a place that you see every day. Set small goals that are realistic and manageable. If you’re currently eating one or two healthy meals each week, do not resolve to eat 21 healthy meals come January. Instead, resolve to eat one healthy meal a day, or, five healthy meals each week. Start slowly and increase over time.
Use the month of December to prepare yourself for transformation in 2013. Recruit friends and family to support you and ask how you can support them, too. Helping your friends meet their goals is a wonderful way to solidify an already close bond.
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