Every year, millions of people hoping to spark positive change make New Year’s resolutions. The recurring themes each year include a more active approach to health and fitness, improved finances, and learning new things for personal and professional development. See what resolutions you can make this year and how to keep them all through 2024.
Ideas for Resolutions
Making resolutions, or goal setting, is like plotting a course on a map, providing direction, keeping you focused, and guiding your journey to success. When you set goals, you’re making a promise to yourself. It’s about remaining accountable and taking ownership of your actions.
Deadlines and milestones, therefore, remind you to stay focused and disciplined. By sticking to your plan and putting in the effort day in and day out, you develop habits that pave the way for your growth and success, whether it’s in your career or personal life.
Resolutions are not only beneficial for your physical well-being, but also your mental well-being. Chances are, more than a couple of the most common resolutions will look familiar to you:
- Exercise more
- Lose weight
- Quit smoking
- Drink less alcohol and drink more water
- Get organized/declutter
- Learn a new skill or hobby
- Save more money/spend less money
- Spend more time with family and friends
- Travel more
- Read more
How to Keep Resolutions
If you are like the majority of resolution-makers, keeping these goals can be quite the challenge.
Here are a few tips to help you stick with your New Year’s Resolution.
- Stay focused – Many times people try to do too much at once. By setting only one or two goals, you prevent overload and allow yourself to focus more closely on the things you want to achieve.
- Stay within reach – When choosing your New Year’s resolution, be sure that your goal is achievable. If you set too high of a standard for yourself, you may become discouraged and are more likely to give up. Start small and once you achieve, up the ante.
- Make a plan – Think through exactly how and when you will reach your goal. Pick milestones and deadlines that you want to reach. Consider how you will fight temptation and stay positive. Adequate preparation and routine will help you keep your eye on the prize.
- Be specific – Quantify what you want to accomplish and how you will do it. If you want to lose weight, choose a goal weight to reach, set standards for how many times you will go to the gym or how many ‘cheat’ meals you can have per month. Putting value on these goals helps you to stay on track and manage your progress.
- Make it a group effort – There is power in numbers. Join up with friends and make it a group effort. You will help keep each other motivated and on track.
- Reward yourself – Be sure to recognize the progress that you’ve made and reward yourself for meeting milestones.
With any goal, there are highs and lows. Staying positive is key. It’s okay if you’re not seeing the results that you want as quickly as you intended, or if you slip up here and there. It is not always a straight path to achievement, but it is so worth it once you get to where you are going. Keep your head up and there’s no doubt that 2024 will be your year.
Taylor J. Rider, D.O., is a first-year resident with the UPMC Williamsport Family Medicine Residency at UPMC Williamsport. During training, residents complete a Lifestyle Medicine curriculum through the American College of Lifestyle Medicine with the goal of helping patients reverse chronic disease and achieve wellness through lifestyle changes, focusing on diet, exercise, stress management, sleep, socialization, and reducing unhealthy substance use. At the end of residency, they are licensed as Family Medicine physicians and eligible to become board-certified in Lifestyle Medicine. To learn more about the residency, go to UPMC.com/FamilyMedicineResidencyNCPA.