by Blake Herzog
The people, places and things urging you to make New Year’s resolutions are inescapable this time of year — and so are the discouraging statistics about how many people stick with their resolutions.
But there are ways around this. Setting specific and achievable goals is a biggie, along with keeping the consequences of not meeting your goals at front of mind.
You can try “bundling” your temptations with your resolutions by reading or listening to your favorite guilty-pleasure novels while working out. It also may help to not spend too much time fantasizing about how great life will be once you reach your goals, which can set up unrealistic expectations.
These are broad suggestions for those looking for a resolution to propel them into the new year — you can set specific goals that apply to your life.
Set and stick to a budget
This is getting increasingly important so, if you aren’t already, take some steps to figure out how much you can realistically spend per month, then break it down per week.
Track all of your spending, plan for upcoming events and expenses and stash as much as you can away in savings or sensible investments. This is easier than it sounds with spreadsheets and budgeting apps, and even meal planning can have a huge impact on the bottom line.
Eat more superfoods
There is no universal definition, but these generally are unprocessed, relatively low-calorie and include considerable amounts of important
nutrients like antioxidants, vitamins, minerals and fiber.
Some of the most readily available foods that tend to make these lists are carrots, spinach, avocado, berries (especially blue), tomatoes, walnuts, eggs and salmon.
Spend more time walking/running
Getting and keeping fit may be the most frequently made resolution given how stores tend to replace holiday-specific inventory with yoga mats, barbells and treadmills.
But if you’re sensing these might be space-takers instead of calorie burners, then start out incorporating more walking or running into your routine, either at a designated time or by expanding your modes of transportation for work or errands.
Once you have a hard time finding what you need or feel too drained by the mess around your house to even think about doing anything about it, it’s time for an intervention, hopefully by yourself.
The fresh start of the new year may be the best time to change your habits in this arena. Set aside a little time each day to wipe things down and throw out incidental trash so it never becomes overwhelming.
Learn a new skill
Think of something you’ve always wanted to learn or something that’s come up recently that would help you get ahead at work or in leisure. Your options for online classes grow broader by the day through MasterClass, Coursera, Udemy and many more platforms.
You can even use them to help you keep on track with your resolutions by taking a walking or running course or a class on decluttering!