5 Tips to Make Changes Toward a New You in the New Year

How to Make Positive Changes for the New Year


While countless people resolve to adopt new positive changes each new year, studies show that most struggle to achieve their goals. Change is difficult, but with the right mindset, commitment and support, you can do it. Here are five ways to achieve personal growth in the new year.


Choose the right goals. When we are feeling especially motivated, it's easy to aim high with goals that feel right during the moment. Unfortunately, our outlooks tend to change once our motivation wanes. This is why it's so important to set reasonable goals that fit well within your schedule and lifestyle. Instead of resolving to run a triathlon; commit to bypassing the elevator in favor of the stairs. Instead of going on a crash diet; focus on eating more fresh produce and whole grains. Whatever your individual goals, make sure they actually fit your life, so you will have a better chance for success.


Tell the world. People tend to have more success with their New Year's resolutions when they go public with their goals. Increase accountability by telling your family, friends and social networks your plans for the upcoming year. You can also improve your chances for success by recruiting a friend or two into your endeavor. This is especially helpful if you are trying to exercise more or pick up other healthy habits. When we strive to improve ourselves alongside others, we can celebrate our accomplishments and gain valuable support which can help propel us toward our goals.


Set a clear goal. When goals aren't clearly defined, they are doomed to fail. On the other hand, when they are clearly defined, they become much more achievable. If you aim to spend more time with your kids, for instance, you need to target the exact days and ways you will accomplish this. If you resolve to travel more, you need to set a date and destination. Whatever your resolutions for the new year, make sure they are clearly defined. Write down your goal and the steps you will need to take to achieve it, so you will have a clear outline for success.


Resolve to reach out. You may not need much help to adopt certain New Year's resolutions, such as reading more or spending more time with the ones you love. That said, some resolutions can seem like imposing mountains, especially when they center on our mental or emotional well-being. If you are hoping to conquer depression, anxiety, relationship difficulties or the effects of lingering childhood trauma; consider seeking guidance and support from an experienced therapist who can help you cultivate skills and strategies to get past your issues.


Don't count on willpower. Even the strongest willpower tends to fade over time, especially when we strive to achieve challenging or undesirable goals, such as losing weight or dumping bad habits. More often than not, long-term goals are best achieved through habitual behavior, involving the same actions at the same times each day. Much like brushing and flossing, you should weave your new resolutions into your everyday schedule. By making them part of your daily routine, you can turn resolutions into positive habits that support personal growth in the new year and beyond.


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