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Keeping Your Resolutions

While 80% of resolutions are abandoned by February, that doesn’t mean they’re impossible to do. Goal setting is an important part of success with resolutions, and can help improve your mental health.

The first step is to keep it simple. Start with one big important resolution and focus your attention on it. While it’s easy to overload your list of resolutions with everything we aspire to do, that’s the best way to make the whole thing feel unattainable. Your resolutions don’t have to be grand, lofty goals, and they certainly shouldn’t be something you don’t reasonably think you can do. Choosing a resolution like “eat more vegetables”, “drink more water”, “stretch in the mornings” or something along those lines can help make sure you keep them. Make a list of possible resolutions and narrow it down to one or a few you’re most likely to keep.

Writing your resolution down on a sheet of paper helps you set your intention with the resolution, and focus on it. Now select somewhere convenient where you can store the paper, a place where you’ll see it every day. Try the fridge, your bedroom or bathroom mirror, or if it’s small enough, carry it in your wallet. Seeing your resolutions every day will keep them in the forefront of your mind, more easily allowing you to stick to them.

Celebrate your successes. While setbacks will be inevitable, try not to dwell on them. The best course of action is to pick yourself up and try again, making sure to try harder next time to stick to your resolution. Celebrating yourself whenever you meet a goal or milestone will provide positive reinforcement, helping to encourage yourself to keep at it all year.