New Year, New You: Putting the Resolute in Resolution

By Patrick Banks

Posted 4 weeks agoHEALTH

The party night is over, and you may have consumed more than one alcoholic beverage. You wake up feeling ready to implement the good New Year’s resolutions you compiled, like creating a gratitude journal, sticking to the recommended amount of no more than two glasses of red wine, taking a road trip to visit an old friend, and giving your home a monthly cleaning spree.  

Who doesn’t want to be bold, courageous, and persistent? These are synonyms of resolute, from which the word resolution derives. The idea of changing your life and becoming happier and healthier from January 1st is very common, but sticking to the New Year’s resolutions is a challenge not everyone is able to take on. 

Only a few New Year’s resolutioners sustain their goals in the long term. Want to become one of the rarified successful? Read on for some evidence-based tips.

How to Make New Year’s Resolutions

The enduring success of New Year’s resolutions depends upon core elements that promote lasting change. The following five are essential if you want to exemplify the persistent part of the resolution equation:

  1. Be specific
  2. Track your progress
  3. Give yourself enough time
  4. Get some help from technology
  5. Create a plan

These essentials need some unpacking, so let’s explore each one in more detail.

   1.  Be specific

Even the best goals are bound for failure if they are poorly articulated. The trick to success is creating clear, actionable steps that can be easily verified, helping to hold you accountable for your self-improvement over the upcoming year.

According to a review for Consulting Psychology, there are two significant factors at play in goal attainment – “the will” and “the way.” The former refers to motivation to achieve the desired end, and the latter to skills needed or the ability to get there.

For example, if you have the will to put extra money in your bank account, it won’t do you much good without a way, such as saving money or increasing earnings.  

More money, like a happier life, is something you work for in a specific, stepwise fashion.

    2. Track your progress

Once you’ve laid down your specific plan for achieving your New Year’s resolutions, you’ll want to implement a tracking method. Depending on the nature of your goals, this will look different. 

For example, if you’re trying to start exercising, you would mark down how many days in the week you worked out, in what capacity, and for how much time. 

Or, if you’re trying to cut down on social media, you’d track your average time at the outset and measure your daily dose against that starting number.

Regardless, you want it to be crystal clear when you are on target and when you slip up.  

Handwritten letters and strategically placed post-its with notes to self can remind you of your personal goals and keep you on track. You’ll find that accountability is king if you want to attain your desires in life.

    3.  Give yourself enough time

It’s unwise to stack the deck against yourself, and a surefire way to do this is by creating unrealistic timelines for implementing your new routine. 

Studies have shown that feeling you don’t have adequate time lowers your sense of well-being.  

You don’t need a clinical psychologist to tell you it’s stressful to be under the gun, and more stress shouldn’t be your New Year’s resolution.

It helps to recall that lasting change doesn’t happen overnight, and the behaviors you’re looking to change likely crept up on you. Likewise, the corrective measures will take time to bear fruit. 

    4.  Get some help from technology

We have a wealth of tools at our disposal, ready to help us reach our goals. Getting a little assistance from technology is a great way to work smarter, not harder.  

However, an overabundance of information can lead to decision fatigue. With so many apps to choose from, how do you decide? 

Sometimes, a solid recommendation is just what the doctor ordered.

If you’re like most people and exercise is one of your goals, then the Joggo app is perfect for you. It will help you get on track to losing weight, increasing stamina, and elevating your mood by starting your day right off with a morning run.

In addition to helping you set personal goals, track progress, get rewards for achievements, and navigate between different running modes, the app provides educational tools and access to in-house specialists while taking into consideration your emotional and mental states.  

    5.  Create a plan

Seconds lead to minutes, minutes to hours, and hours to days. As obvious as this is, creating a blueprint for the life you want to live by outlining how you spend your time gives you the proper steps for the long run.  

It doesn’t have to be complicated and can be loose and fun as long as it’s consistent. If you want to eat healthier, what does that mean for you? What are the steps, and when, where, and how are they implemented?  

The best advice is to make a plan that recalls where you were in the past year, meets you where you’re at today, and sets you on the road to your desired future.

How Many People Fail Their New Year’s Resolutions and Why?

If you’ve ever found yourself in the position of abandoning your resolutions after only a few weeks, you’re not alone. Though it’s difficult to determine the exact success rates of New Year’s resolutions, it’s clear that the odds aren’t great. 

A web search of how many people fail garners results ranging from 8% to 49% success over the long term.  

One study followed roughly 200 people over two years. In that instance, the outcome was a 19% success rate.

The available evidence suggests that the average person fails regardless of whether the aim is to lose weight, save money, reduce stress, or quit a bad habit.

Don’t let this information get you down, though. There’s plenty of cause for hope when you focus on the more useful question of what sets apart those who thrive rather than focusing on why people’s resolutions fail. 

A study for the Journal Of Clinical Psychology showed that a feeling of self-efficacy (belief in your capability), having the skills to change, and being ready to change all contributed to a person’s success.

In addition, they found that making a resolution was vastly more effective for reaching goals than not making one (46% vs. 4% success).

Another study showed that being positively motivated to look good and achieve your goals is more effective than being negatively motivated by fear of failure or the judgments of others.  

It also showed that being supported by access to valuable information and by friends and family increases your likelihood of success.

This information should light a fire to believe in yourself, hone the new skills you’ll need on your journey, surround yourself with supportive friends and family, and cultivate your readiness for change.  

It should also provide encouragement to commit to your resolution since you’re much more likely to reach your goal if you have one. 

What Are Good New Year’s Resolution Ideas?

Not all resolutions are created equal; while some set you up to successfully turn over a new leaf, others trip you up before you’re out of the gate.  

The following 5 are good New Year’s resolution ideas to guide you toward a healthier, happier You.

Start working out to feel better

One resolution most people make is to live healthier. This might mean drinking less alcohol, quitting smoking, getting enough sleep, or increasing physical activity. The best resolutions will set goals that include working out.

The body needs to move regularly to function at its best. One reason is that your lymphatic system, aka tubes and nodes that run through your body, cleansing it and supporting immune function, doesn’t have a pump. If you don’t move, it doesn’t work well.

A great idea to help you get moving is to take up jogging. Not only will this support your lymph system as it tones and strengthens your body, but it will also improve your lung capacity, bolster confidence, and mental health.  

Plus, it will get you outside, ensuring you spend less time watching TV. While you’re at it, why not employ some modern magic and tap into the tools of technology?

Use the Joggo app to help you set targets of pace or distance and keep track of your results. This feedback will help you manage your fitness goals and keep you accountable, which is a win-win. 

Take the stairs when you can

It may seem insignificant, but looking at the big picture, every place you can add a little extra movement into your life helps.  

Taking the stairs is a simple, quick way to get your heart rate up and burn a few extra calories.  

The additional blood pumping through your body will also make you feel more alert and present, which most of us can use in our day.

Stretch every day

Becoming stiff and rigid as we age isn’t a foregone conclusion. In many societies, people remain flexible and mobile throughout life. For example, in India and much of Asia, sitting on the floor is common, and people can quickly go through the motions from sitting to standing at all ages.

Furthermore, research confirms that practicing hatha yoga, a common activity that originated in India, reduces pain for sufferers of arthritis.

You can make use of this knowledge by beginning a daily stretching routine.

When we sleep, our synovial fluid – the cushioning liquid between bones that also lubricates our joints – settles from lack of motion.  

This process can cause inflammatory materials to pool around the joints, causing pain and stiffness, especially in the morning.  

Gently stretching and moving your whole body will help work this out. The key is to stick to it daily.  

Try new workouts every two weeks

They say variety is the spice of life. When it comes to implementing an exercise regime, it can be the crucial difference between sticking to your resolution and succumbing to failure.  

In our fast-paced world, it’s easy to have a short attention span for activities that are too repetitive. You could be fully on board the first week of a workout, but your enthusiasm begins flagging by the middle of the next.

Here is yet another place the Joggo app has your back. They offer an updated running plan bi-weekly that makes keeping your workouts diverse a cinch.  

Who doesn’t like that?

Cook at home at least twice a week 

Eating out is a quick way to spend money that is often costly to your body. It’s challenging to reach dietary goals if you forfeit control over what you consume to others.  

A simple way to overcome this is to enact the self-care of cooking your own food. 

Time is in short supply for many of us, so it helps to be strategic. Pick a night when you can do food prep that works for more than one recipe.  

This procedure might look like washing and chopping vegetables, cooking beans, making a roast, or prepping dressings/marinades, whatever works for you and saves time.

If you’re a novice in the kitchen, fear not! You can find tons of user-friendly recipes online, and cooking is a great excuse to recruit friends and family for a fun, sociable time well spent. Plus, your handy Joggo app offers a personalized meal plan which further simplifies things.

A Word From a Personal Trainer

It can’t be overstated that having accountability is a core aspect of successfully sticking to any personal goal. Seeking support can make all the difference in making your New Year’s resolutions a reality.

Still, some general advice can help anyone to get started. The first thing to do is to establish some baselines to create a safe, effective, personalized plan to reach your fitness goals.  

Be as comprehensive as possible as you assess the starting point of your skills across various measures, including fitness, flexibility, endurance, speed, and agility.  

You’ll also want to take note of your starting weight, body mass index (BMI), sleep patterns, eating times, meal portions, and macronutrient composition.

The aim is to be clear about where you’re beginning from and determine where you hope to end up. Then plot the steps needed to get you there.

To maximize the benefits of your plan and workouts, keep the following in mind:

  • Set reasonable goals. Doing this will improve performance and reduce frustration and feelings of failure.
  • Start slow. You’re building a new skill set; it’s vital that you establish good habits of form and exercise safely.
  • Seek advice. Working out is learning a new language you won’t always understand; seeking clarity from a professional will help you learn more effectively.
  • Review and recap often. Nothing beats repetition when learning a new skill.
  • Get out of your comfort zone. Part of your training is expanding your capabilities, and you won’t tread new ground by walking in circles.
  • Be ready to work hard. Exercise isn’t just to earn you more compliments; it’s meant to push you, help you break through limitations, and get you to the next level. Go for it!

Conclusion

Many people begin the new year with the desire to make changes for the better, but unfortunately, too many people’s resolutions fail.  

However, being armed with an arsenal of tools like making reasonable, specific, and actionable goals, getting the support you need, and having a clear plan, means you don’t have to be one of them.  

You’re poised to let the new year unveil a new you because you’ve got the boldness, courage, and persistence to begin living the fulfilling life of your dreams by putting the resolute in resolution.

New Year, New You: Putting the Resolute in Resolution

The party night is over, and you may have consumed more than one alcoholic beverage. You wake up feeling ready to implement the good New Year’s resolutions you compiled, like creating a gratitude journal, sticking to the recommended amount of no more than two glasses of red wine, taking a road trip to visit an old friend, and giving your home a monthly cleaning spree.  

Who doesn’t want to be bold, courageous, and persistent? These are synonyms of resolute, from which the word resolution derives. The idea of changing your life and becoming happier and healthier from January 1st is very common, but sticking to the New Year’s resolutions is a challenge not everyone is able to take on. 

Only a few New Year’s resolutioners sustain their goals in the long term. Want to become one of the rarified successful? Read on for some evidence-based tips.

How to Make New Year’s Resolutions

The enduring success of New Year’s resolutions depends upon core elements that promote lasting change. The following five are essential if you want to exemplify the persistent part of the resolution equation:

  1. Be specific
  2. Track your progress
  3. Give yourself enough time
  4. Get some help from technology
  5. Create a plan

These essentials need some unpacking, so let’s explore each one in more detail.

   1.  Be specific

Even the best goals are bound for failure if they are poorly articulated. The trick to success is creating clear, actionable steps that can be easily verified, helping to hold you accountable for your self-improvement over the upcoming year.

According to a review for Consulting Psychology, there are two significant factors at play in goal attainment – “the will” and “the way.” The former refers to motivation to achieve the desired end, and the latter to skills needed or the ability to get there.

For example, if you have the will to put extra money in your bank account, it won’t do you much good without a way, such as saving money or increasing earnings.  

More money, like a happier life, is something you work for in a specific, stepwise fashion.

    2. Track your progress

Once you’ve laid down your specific plan for achieving your New Year’s resolutions, you’ll want to implement a tracking method. Depending on the nature of your goals, this will look different. 

For example, if you’re trying to start exercising, you would mark down how many days in the week you worked out, in what capacity, and for how much time. 

Or, if you’re trying to cut down on social media, you’d track your average time at the outset and measure your daily dose against that starting number.

Regardless, you want it to be crystal clear when you are on target and when you slip up.  

Handwritten letters and strategically placed post-its with notes to self can remind you of your personal goals and keep you on track. You’ll find that accountability is king if you want to attain your desires in life.

    3.  Give yourself enough time

It’s unwise to stack the deck against yourself, and a surefire way to do this is by creating unrealistic timelines for implementing your new routine. 

Studies have shown that feeling you don’t have adequate time lowers your sense of well-being.  

You don’t need a clinical psychologist to tell you it’s stressful to be under the gun, and more stress shouldn’t be your New Year’s resolution.

It helps to recall that lasting change doesn’t happen overnight, and the behaviors you’re looking to change likely crept up on you. Likewise, the corrective measures will take time to bear fruit. 

    4.  Get some help from technology

We have a wealth of tools at our disposal, ready to help us reach our goals. Getting a little assistance from technology is a great way to work smarter, not harder.  

However, an overabundance of information can lead to decision fatigue. With so many apps to choose from, how do you decide? 

Sometimes, a solid recommendation is just what the doctor ordered.

If you’re like most people and exercise is one of your goals, then the Joggo app is perfect for you. It will help you get on track to losing weight, increasing stamina, and elevating your mood by starting your day right off with a morning run.

In addition to helping you set personal goals, track progress, get rewards for achievements, and navigate between different running modes, the app provides educational tools and access to in-house specialists while taking into consideration your emotional and mental states.  

    5.  Create a plan

Seconds lead to minutes, minutes to hours, and hours to days. As obvious as this is, creating a blueprint for the life you want to live by outlining how you spend your time gives you the proper steps for the long run.  

It doesn’t have to be complicated and can be loose and fun as long as it’s consistent. If you want to eat healthier, what does that mean for you? What are the steps, and when, where, and how are they implemented?  

The best advice is to make a plan that recalls where you were in the past year, meets you where you’re at today, and sets you on the road to your desired future.

How Many People Fail Their New Year’s Resolutions and Why?

If you’ve ever found yourself in the position of abandoning your resolutions after only a few weeks, you’re not alone. Though it’s difficult to determine the exact success rates of New Year’s resolutions, it’s clear that the odds aren’t great. 

A web search of how many people fail garners results ranging from 8% to 49% success over the long term.  

One study followed roughly 200 people over two years. In that instance, the outcome was a 19% success rate.

The available evidence suggests that the average person fails regardless of whether the aim is to lose weight, save money, reduce stress, or quit a bad habit.

Don’t let this information get you down, though. There’s plenty of cause for hope when you focus on the more useful question of what sets apart those who thrive rather than focusing on why people’s resolutions fail. 

A study for the Journal Of Clinical Psychology showed that a feeling of self-efficacy (belief in your capability), having the skills to change, and being ready to change all contributed to a person’s success.  

In addition, they found that making a resolution was vastly more effective for reaching goals than not making one (46% vs. 4% success).

Another study showed that being positively motivated to look good and achieve your goals is more effective than being negatively motivated by fear of failure or the judgments of others.  

It also showed that being supported by access to valuable information and by friends and family increases your likelihood of success.

This information should light a fire to believe in yourself, hone the new skills you’ll need on your journey, surround yourself with supportive friends and family, and cultivate your readiness for change.  

It should also provide encouragement to commit to your resolution since you’re much more likely to reach your goal if you have one. 

What Are Good New Year’s Resolution Ideas?

Not all resolutions are created equal; while some set you up to successfully turn over a new leaf, others trip you up before you’re out of the gate.  

The following 5 are good New Year’s resolution ideas to guide you toward a healthier, happier You.

1. Start working out to feel better

One resolution most people make is to live healthier. This might mean drinking less alcohol, quitting smoking, getting enough sleep, or increasing physical activity. The best resolutions will set goals that include working out.

The body needs to move regularly to function at its best. One reason is that your lymphatic system, aka tubes and nodes that run through your body, cleansing it and supporting immune function, doesn’t have a pump. If you don’t move, it doesn’t work well.

A great idea to help you get moving is to take up jogging. Not only will this support your lymph system as it tones and strengthens your body, but it will also improve your lung capacity, bolster confidence, and mental health.  

Plus, it will get you outside, ensuring you spend less time watching TV. While you’re at it, why not employ some modern magic and tap into the tools of technology?

Use the Joggo app to help you set targets of pace or distance and keep track of your results. This feedback will help you manage your fitness goals and keep you accountable, which is a win-win. 

2. Take the stairs when you can

It may seem insignificant, but looking at the big picture, every place you can add a little extra movement into your life helps.  

Taking the stairs is a simple, quick way to get your heart rate up and burn a few extra calories.  

The additional blood pumping through your body will also make you feel more alert and present, which most of us can use in our day.

3. Stretch every day

Becoming stiff and rigid as we age isn’t a foregone conclusion. In many societies, people remain flexible and mobile throughout life. For example, in India and much of Asia, sitting on the floor is common, and people can quickly go through the motions from sitting to standing at all ages.

Furthermore, research confirms that practicing hatha yoga, a common activity that originated in India, reduces pain for sufferers of arthritis.

You can make use of this knowledge by beginning a daily stretching routine.

When we sleep, our synovial fluid – the cushioning liquid between bones that also lubricates our joints – settles from lack of motion.  

This process can cause inflammatory materials to pool around the joints, causing pain and stiffness, especially in the morning.  

Gently stretching and moving your whole body will help work this out. The key is to stick to it daily.  

4. Try new workouts every two weeks

They say variety is the spice of life. When it comes to implementing an exercise regime, it can be the crucial difference between sticking to your resolution and succumbing to failure.  

In our fast-paced world, it’s easy to have a short attention span for activities that are too repetitive. You could be fully on board the first week of a workout, but your enthusiasm begins flagging by the middle of the next.

Here is yet another place the Joggo app has your back. They offer an updated running plan bi-weekly that makes keeping your workouts diverse a cinch.  

Who doesn’t like that?

5. Cook at home at least twice a week 

Eating out is a quick way to spend money that is often costly to your body. It’s challenging to reach dietary goals if you forfeit control over what you consume to others.  

A simple way to overcome this is to enact the self-care of cooking your own food. 

Time is in short supply for many of us, so it helps to be strategic. Pick a night when you can do food prep that works for more than one recipe.  

This procedure might look like washing and chopping vegetables, cooking beans, making a roast, or prepping dressings/marinades, whatever works for you and saves time.

If you’re a novice in the kitchen, fear not! You can find tons of user-friendly recipes online, and cooking is a great excuse to recruit friends and family for a fun, sociable time well spent. Plus, your handy Joggo app offers a personalized meal plan which further simplifies things.

A Word From a Personal Trainer

It can’t be overstated that having accountability is a core aspect of successfully sticking to any personal goal. Seeking support can make all the difference in making your New Year’s resolutions a reality.

Still, some general advice can help anyone to get started. The first thing to do is to establish some baselines to create a safe, effective, personalized plan to reach your fitness goals.  

Be as comprehensive as possible as you assess the starting point of your skills across various measures, including fitness, flexibility, endurance, speed, and agility.  

You’ll also want to take note of your starting weight, body mass index (BMI), sleep patterns, eating times, meal portions, and macronutrient composition.

The aim is to be clear about where you’re beginning from and determine where you hope to end up. Then plot the steps needed to get you there.

To maximize the benefits of your plan and workouts, keep the following in mind:

  • Set reasonable goals. Doing this will improve performance and reduce frustration and feelings of failure.
  • Start slow. You’re building a new skill set; it’s vital that you establish good habits of form and exercise safely.
  • Seek advice. Working out is learning a new language you won’t always understand; seeking clarity from a professional will help you learn more effectively.
  • Review and recap often. Nothing beats repetition when learning a new skill.
  • Get out of your comfort zone. Part of your training is expanding your capabilities, and you won’t tread new ground by walking in circles.
  • Be ready to work hard. Exercise isn’t just to earn you more compliments; it’s meant to push you, help you break through limitations, and get you to the next level. Go for it!

Conclusion

Many people begin the new year with the desire to make changes for the better, but unfortunately, too many people’s resolutions fail.  

However, being armed with an arsenal of tools like making reasonable, specific, and actionable goals, getting the support you need, and having a clear plan, means you don’t have to be one of them.  

You’re poised to let the new year unveil a new you because you’ve got the boldness, courage, and persistence to begin living the fulfilling life of your dreams by putting the resolute in resolution.

About the author Patrick Banks

Patrick is a Berlin-based dating advisor, motivational speaker, a huge fitness and vegan diet enthusiast and the main editor at Wingman Magazine, specialised in men's health. His ultimate goal is to share with men around the world his passion for self-development and to help them to become the greatest version of themselves. He believes a healthy body and successful social interactions are two main keys to happiness.

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