4 surefire tips to make your resolutions stick
Here comes January, ready to whip us into shape with resolutions and goal-setting.
The start of the year means a fresh slate for many. Almost half of Americans (45 percent) will make resolutions, according to the Statistic Brain Research Institute. But the same study shows that when it comes to following through, we flop. Big time! Only 8 percent of those who make resolutions are successful in achieving their goals.
Want to buck the trend? Psychologists have found that the key to following through with your resolutions is to set realistic goals and come up with an action plan.
Here are some top resolutions, along with some surefire ways to follow through.
The resolution: Lose weight
Ever notice the resolution rush at the gym come January? By February, though, the lines die down at the weight machines and the lap lanes in the pool open back up.
Instead of going on a super-strict diet and working out overtime in the gym, set some manageable goals — like losing one to two pounds per week, which nutrition experts vow is the safe way to lose weight. (By summer, you could be down 26 to 52 pounds!)
Excuse buster: Your goals to make it to the gym every day are admirable. But, life happens — a sick kid, icy roads or an unexpected appointment during the hour you blocked off for the gym. Have a back-up plan so that you can get a good sweat session in at home. Tone your body and lose weight with PiYo (which combines pilates and yoga) from BeachBody. You’ll get 7 workouts on 3 DVDS that you can do from home. PiYo Workout, 3 payments of $19.95, plus $12.95 shipping and handling, BeachBody.com
The resolution: Get organized
Getting your entire house organized can be overwhelming. Instead, make it a year-long process — breaking up projects and tackling one a month. For example, one month tackle the “drop zone” entryway, with a place for your family members to store their coats, boots, and backpacks and a station that can corral loose change and keys. Next month, move on to the pantry. When the weather warms up, wrangle the garage.
Excuse buster: The Container Store has storage and organization solutions for every room in your house. Gain some momentum by starting small in your bedroom drawers, organizing socks, tights, ties, and undergarments. We love the cheerful pop of color from these Pippi Drawer Organizers. Pippi Drawer Organizers, $5.99 to $7.99 (plus Cash Back), ContainerStore.com
The resolution – Save money
Spending less and saving more usually lands in the top 3 on lists of most popular resolutions. Whether you’re saving for a summer vacation or eyeing retirement, there’s a myriad of money management techniques. Some big, like refinancing your home, and some smaller, like signing up for Mint to help yourself set monthly budgets.
Excuse buster: Sign up for ShopAtHome.com! We have a few easy ways to help you save on purchases you’re already making. Check out free, printable grocery coupons before you head to the store. When you become a member (it’s free!), you’ll earn Cash Back at thousands of retailers when you buy online. Once you accumulate $20, ShopAtHome.com will send you a check. Go ahead, stash that in your savings!
The resolution – Spend more time with family and friends
This is our favorite among the most popular resolutions. In an era of social media, real facetime is something to be treasured. A few ways to make sure you’re getting enough time in with family and friends? Make plans in advance and treat them like any other important appointments.
Excuse buster: Check out Groupon and plan a fun outing. Take, for example, a family ice skating excursion! By being active, saving money on Groupon and planning a fun outing with your family and friends, you’ve got a trifecta of resolutions addressed. From 48 percent off deals at Winter Village ice skating in New York’s midtown to $10 ice skating passes at the historic Queen Mary in Long Beach, California, we found skating deals coast to coast at Groupon.