We all do it. We start the new year off with great plans and resolutions and by the 3rd week in January, we’ve given up, only to go back to our old ways. With some help from our friends at Fast Company, here are some helpful tips for keeping your new year’s resolutions.
1) Keep them at the top of your mind. Write your resolutions down and place them somewhere that you’ll see them every day. It’s especially helpful if you add them to your prayer life.
2) Make them into a daily habit. We often trick ourselves into thinking that we can do the new behavior once a week, or twice a month. That never works. For a new habit to form, we must do it every day for at least 21 days.
3) Don’t make resolutions about things you should do. Make them about something your passionate about. For example, instead of saying, “I should lose weight”, tell yourself, “my body is a gift from God and I want to take care of it”. Instead of saying, “I should pray”, say, “I want to talk with God every day”.
4) Have others hold you accountable. Find someone you trust and tell them your resolutions. Ask them to ask you how you are doing once a week.
5) Get others to join you. Making changes in our lives is always easier (and more fun) when we have others walking alongside us.
6) Attach a number to resolutions. Notice the difference in these two resolutions: In 2016 I’m going to try to pray more, and, in 2016 I’m going to pray 3 times a week, from 7 – 7:15 in the morning on Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday. Which one do you think your more likely to keep?
7) Keep track of your progress. Get a journal or a notebook and write down how your doing (both the good and the bad). You’ll begin to see patterns for when you do well, and when you don’t.
Most of all, be kind to yourself. Resolutions are meant to help you grow. They aren’t meant to be means to torture yourself if you stumble, or fall short.