As we come to the end of one year to celebrate the arrival of the next, resolutions for 2023 are emerging everywhere. Whether the resolutions are about forming new habits, diet and exercise, or saving money, it is difficult to escape them. Social media and advertisements are especially heavy hitters for encouraging people to make New Year’s Resolutions. I have already seen countless ads for gym memberships or products to learn new skills.
Having goals isn’t isn’t bad…right?
Right. Goals are not unhealthy. Goals are great! What isn’t as helpful is feeling pressured to make radical changes and expect long-lasting results from one year. Research has shown that most people who set New Years Resolutions call it quits within a month. Surveys have even shown that resolutions are broken by the end of January. Think about one person you know who has successfully committed to a New Years Resolution…anyone come to mind? With all of that in mind, here’s what we can do about it.
- Set intentions instead of goals. Are you wanting to quit smoking or eat healthier? What is motivating you to do so? Consider your intentions behind your desired goal. Reflecting on the reasoning for your goal will help you stick to a new habit in the long run.
- Have accountability partners. Change is shown to be more effective and long-lasting when we have others helping us stay accountable with our goals. Whether it’s a gym buddy or a support group, relationships with others permit us to stick with change.
- Talk about it. Sharing with family members, friends, and other loved ones about your hopes for the next year provides an outlet for feedback, ideas, and emotional release. Counseling is another great option for sharing about your desire to change. Therapists can equip you with resources and tools to help you commit to your desired goal, along with having support along the way.