5 reasons New Year’s resolutions fail

New Year’s is the perfect time to evaluate your life and commit to making changes that will help you in the future. But more often than not, those New Year’s resolutions of yours have already been thrown out the window by the end of January. Here’s why your resolutions keep failing and what you can do to change that in 2018.

Your goals are too vague

As with all goals, being too vague can come back to bite you—and more often than not, leads to you not accomplishing said goal. Instead of just writing down “Lose weight” as your New Year’s resolution, get specific. Decide the specific number of pounds that you would like to lose by a certain date and then jot down a few tasks you are going to commit to in order to meet that goal (e.g. Counting your daily calories and going on a run with your dog every day after work). By setting specific task metrics and outlining the steps for success, you’re more likely to hit your goal and get a sense of accomplishment when you do.

You’re not making a change in your lifestyle

Goals are nice to dream about, but if you’re not actually committed to change, nothing big is going to happen for you. When making your New Year’s resolutions, it’s important to be honest with yourself about the kind of lifestyle you want to live and just how much you’re willing to change to meet your goals. If you want to go vegan in 2018, but you know that you can’t resist ordering steak every time you go out to eat, perhaps you should consider an alternative that actually suits your lifestyle (like only eating meat when you’re at restaurants, but eating 100% vegetarian at home).

You don’t have a “Resolution Buddy”

One of the best ways to keep yourself on task is to recruit a family member or friend as a “Resolution Buddy,” or a person who helps you stay on track to meet your goals and vice versa. Once you create your goals for this year, exchange your list with the other person and decide on a check in process. Whether that’s chatting on the phone together once a month about the progress you’ve made, or sending each other motivational texts every week, having someone to constantly remind you of your goals can help you stay motivated when the going gets tough.

You’re trying too much, too soon

If you’re using to living a sedentary lifestyle where you spend most of your time watching Netflix and eating take out in bed, expecting yourself to start enjoying hitting the gym and eating nothing but salads is a bit of an extreme. Instead of writing down “Get healthy” on your New Year’s resolution list start with small, manageable actions that will help you transition your life towards something better. In this case, you might commit to drinking 8 glasses of water per day and going to yoga class 3 days a week.

You’re not committed to change

This is the most common reason why resolutions fail—you’re not actually all that interested in accomplishing the goal. Be honest with yourself when forming your goals and ask yourself why you want to accomplish that goal in the first place. If you can’t come up with a good reason to do so, you’re more likely to abandon that resolution since the payoff won’t be everything that you hope for.

It’s never too late to meet those goals you’ve been dreaming of, and New Year’s is the perfect time to commit to change.

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