It’s the beginning of a new year—and decade (!)—so naturally you’re keen to put your best foot forward and try to better yourself with some 2020 resolutions. Whether you’re taking part in Dry January, Veganuary or making up your own goals for the year ahead, we’re sure you want to know how to keep all those New Year’s resolutions you’ve made. From daily affirmations to handy apps and written reminders, here are our top tips to make sticking to your goals easily.
1. Be specific
New year's resolutions are so much easier to keep when you make them precise. Saying you’re going to ‘go to the gym more often’ is too vague and will no doubt lead to failure. But by committing to going to the gym ‘every Monday, Wednesday and Thursday after work at 7 pm’, you’ve set yourself specific commitments that are much harder to get out of.
2. But also be realistic
The ultimate aim of a resolution is to make it to the end of the year, so be sure to set goals that you keep up for a long period of time (without feeling miserable). Cutting out sugar for a whole year is a drastic goal, but going sugar-free four days a week is much more manageable.
3. Replace rather than remove
Any resolution that is about giving something up should also include a replacement. If you’re giving up alcohol, replace it with smoothies. If you’re giving up chocolate, allow yourself more fruit. If you don’t feel like you’re missing out on anything then you won’t be inclined to quit.
4. Remember to reward yourself too
Doing yoga every week is much nicer in new Lululemon leggings, walking to work is more enjoyable with the latest Nike trainers and healthy eating is the perfect excuse to indulge in some chic cookware. Treating yourself is part of the process, so don’t forget to reward your determination.
5. Tell everyone
Letting family and friends know your goals means they can help to hold you accountable. Having a strong support system can also make it easier to get through tricky times when you would otherwise be inclined to give up. Embrace all the moral support you can get!
6. Write it down
Writing your goals down helps to focus your attention and intention. Once you’ve written out what you want to achieve, keep the piece of paper somewhere you look often (like your desktop screen or bathroom mirror) as a daily reminder.
7. Set reminders
The number one reason people give up on their resolutions? They forget them! For the first two weeks of January resolutions are all anyone can think of, but after that our minds are on other things. Make sure you stay on track by setting Google calendar reminders and alarms on your phone.
8) Use apps if you can
There are tons of apps out there to help you with goal setting (and keeping), so search the iTunes store to see if there are any that could work for you. Aqualert (link to http://aqualertapp.com/) is a great one if you’re trying to drink more water, while Sleep by Headspace (link to https://www.headspace.com/sleep/sleep-by-headspace) is a great one for those looking to get more shut-eye.
9. Make it a mantra
Some people swear by daily affirmations and mantras. When you wake up in the morning, say your new resolutions out loud three times in a row. This will help set your intentions for the day ahead and keep your goals in your subconscious.
10. Don’t give up
If you’re still struggling to enjoy your morning runs after a whole month, don’t just give up on February 1st. Studies have shown that a new habit takes 66 days to form, so keep going!
11. Don’t beat yourself up
If you’ve missed a gym session or drunkenly eaten some junk food, don’t be disheartened. Everyone faces setbacks at one point or another and that’s okay. Rather than give up all together, learn from it and get straight back on the wagon. No-one is perfect, and it’s all about the effort.