Smiling woman in an orange sweater sitting in front of a Christmas tree writing her New Year’s resolutions in a notebook.

How To Set New Year’s Resolutions That Stick

As the year draws to a close, it’s natural to reflect on the past and look forward to new beginnings. New Year’s resolutions have become a popular tradition among many of us as we seek to make positive changes in our lives. However, sticking to these resolutions can be challenging, and they often end up forgotten or abandoned within a few weeks. This year, we want that to be different for you, which is why we’ve put together this step-by-step guide to help you create resolutions that you will actually stick to. 

Why Is Effective Goal-Setting Important?

By its nature, the process of goal setting requires you to create a long-term vision for your life and gives you stepping stones to help you get there, that way you know exactly where you are heading and what steps you need to take to cross the finish line.

Taking yourself through the process of setting long-term and short-term goals will help you create a vision of what you want your life to look like and a framework that will help you organize your time, energy, and efforts in a way that will help you reach your target. This not only gives you a sense of purpose and direction but also comes with the benefits of…

  • Improved focus. Having goals in place gives you a place to focus your time and energy so you can achieve the results you want in the way you want to achieve them. 
  • Enhanced motivation. When you choose goals that align with the larger vision you have for yourself and your life, they are more likely to excite and inspire you. This will help naturally increase your motivation, making you more likely to take action even on days you don’t feel like it. 
  • Increased productivity. Setting concrete, actionable goals gives you a framework for measuring your progress, which ultimately will help you increase your productivity as you track how far you’ve come and compare it to how far you still have to go. Seeing that gap slowly start to close will amp up both your motivation and productivity levels. 
  • Built-in accountability. Setting goals requires a lot of thought and emotional energy. You have to clearly understand where you are right now and visualize where you want to be in the future. This active engagement helps you increase your commitment and gives you built-in accountability to follow through on the daily actions you need to take to be successful. Plus, you can increase this accountability even further by taking the extra step of telling others about the goals you’ve set for yourself. 

The Role of Specificity in Success

When setting new goals for yourself, it can be tempting to keep them general but hear us when we say that specificity is key here. Instead of choosing a vague goal like “exercise more,” dig into the details and be as specific as possible by choosing something like “go for a 30-minute walk every morning.” Why is it better to be specific here? Think about it this way—your goal is like your north star, there to show you which direction is the one you want to be traveling in. If your goal is vague or generalized, the direction it points you in is broad and up for interpretation, but if you choose a goal that is clear and specific, it will show you precisely where you need to go next to get to the destination you are looking for. Because of this, choosing to set specific goals now will greatly increase your chances of successfully achieving them later. 

Why We Need Measurable Goals

In addition to being specific, your goals should also be measurable, which means they should include a precise time frame and information like amounts that can be tracked and compared over time. When you exclude this information, it will be nearly impossible to track how far you have come or know when you have completed the goal, but when you include it, you are giving yourself a way to track your progress and assess your achievements along the way. With that in mind, consider choosing a specific and measurable goal like “eat five servings of fruits and veggies every week for a month” instead of a generic and unmeasurable one like “eat more fruits and veggies.” 

How to Set New Year’s Resolutions—A Guided Approach

Now that you have a better understanding of how important goal-setting is, let’s explore a guided approach you can use to craft your New Year’s resolutions. By following these steps, you can set yourself up for success and increase the likelihood of sticking to your resolutions throughout the year.

1. Focus on One Goal at a Time

When it comes to setting resolutions, it’s best to focus on one goal at a time. While it may be tempting to make a long list of resolutions, spreading ourselves too thin can diminish our chances of success. Instead, choose one goal that is most important to you right now and dedicate your time and energy to achieving it. Focusing on a single goal increases the likelihood of success because it gives you a single thing to focus on, which helps to increase your level of commitment and reduce stress.. By concentrating on one goal, we can allocate our time and resources effectively, increasing our chances of achieving the resolution.

2. Make it Specific and Measurable

We just discussed this, but it’s worth mentioning again—choosing goals that are specific and measurable is key to your success. As a bonus, specific and measurable goals can also help increase your sense of accountability and level of motivation, helping you stay on track and keep pushing forward when you encounter obstacles along the way. 

3. Embrace Small Steps for Big Changes

Big changes start with small steps, and the same goes for sticking to your resolutions. Embrace the power of small, manageable steps to help you make meaningful progress towards your goal. Breaking down your goal into smaller, achievable tasks will reduce feelings of overwhelm and help increase your motivation. For example, if your resolution is built around reading more, with an end goal of reading a certain number of books over the course of the year, start by committing to reading for just 10 minutes each day. Then, over time, you can incrementally increase this amount so that each transition is small and easier to fit into your busy schedule. Embracing small steps like these allows for gradual and sustainable progress, promoting consistency and the formation of new healthy habits. 

4. Avoiding the Pitfalls of Past Failures

We’ve all experienced the disappointment of past resolutions that didn’t stick. To avoid the same missteps this time around, it’s important to reflect on the patterns of behavior that have hindered success before so that you can learn from them and use them as stepping stones toward success this time around. By identifying past setbacks now, you can plan ahead for them, creating a new approach and increasing the likelihood of finding success this time. 

5. Give Your Resolution Time to Become a Habit

When embarking on a journey to change habits, allowing time for your resolution to become a new habit sets the stage for sustainable, long-term change. Acknowledge that behavior changes take time, consistency, and commitment, which means there is no pressure for you to find success immediately. The road to achieving your goals will likely be long, so embrace it and give yourself as much time as you need to make changes gradually so they become new routines that will stick around for more than just a month or two. By giving yourself adequate time to let small changes become regular habits, you will be increasing your likelihood of success and promoting sustainable change that will benefit your life for years to come. 

6. Reward Yourself

Rewarding yourself for the small victories along the way is essential to staying motivated and committed to your resolution. Celebrating the progress you’ve made, no matter how small, will help reinforce the positive changes you are making and increase the chances of you sticking to those changes for the long term. Whether it’s treating yourself to something you enjoy or simply acknowledging your own efforts, rewarding yourself creates a sense of accomplishment and promotes the continuation of good habits. By associating positive experiences with goal pursuit, you not only make success more likely but you also make sticking to your resolution a more enjoyable journey.

Ready, Set…Goal

Setting New Year’s resolutions is a powerful way to start fresh and make positive changes in your life. By understanding the importance of effective goal-setting, incorporating specificity and measurability, and following these tips, you can increase your chances of making your resolutions stick this year. So go ahead. Follow these tips and get to work setting New Year’s resolutions that you will actually stick to so that you can achieve the results you desire.  

At New Earth we are on a mission to positively impact the health of every body and soul we come in contact with. We specialize in producing third-party certified, organic whole food supplements including a variety of probiotics, and digestive support. Our supplements feature a rare, yet highly nutritious superfood, Aphanizomenon flos-aquae (AFA). Also known as organic Wild Microalgae®, AFA is a unique type of microalgae that is available in many forms including tablets, capsules, and powders all designed to help you on your journey to holistic wellness. The best part? We offer a 90-day money-back risk-free guarantee on all of our products. Visit our website to learn more.