How to keep your New Years Resolution….

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Happy New Year!  Have you made a resolution?  In 59 Seconds, I describe how best to keep your resolution….here are my 10 top tips, and a little video….

1) Make only one resolution, your chances of success are greater when you channel energy into changing just one aspect of your behaviour.

2) Don’t wait until New Year’s Eve to think about your resolution and instead take some time out a few days before and reflect upon what you really want to achieve.

3) Avoid previous resolutions; deciding to re-visit a past resolution sets you up for frustration and disappointment.

4) Don’t run with the crowd and go with the usual resolutions.  Instead think about what you really want out of life.

5) Break your goal into a series of steps, focusing on creating sub-goals that are concrete, measurable, and time-based.

6) Tell your friends and family about your goals, thus increasing the fear of failure and eliciting support.

7) Regularly remind yourself of the benefits associated with achieving your goals by creating a checklist of how life would be better once you obtain your aim.

8) Give yourself a small reward whenever you achieve a sub-goal, thus maintaining motivation and a sense of progress.

9) Make your plans and progress concrete by keeping a handwritten journal, completing a computer spreadsheet or covering a notice board with graphs or pictures.

 10) Expect to revert to your old habits from time to time. Treat any failure as a temporary set-back rather than a reason to give up altogether.

Are you going to make a resolution?  What is it?

29 comments on “How to keep your New Years Resolution….

  1. Ian says:

    Happy New Year Richard :D And thanks for more good advice that does work :) Have an excellent year and best wishes for every happiness and success in all you do :)

  2. Nick Wright says:

    I have a better idea.
    Don’t make a resolution..
    What you don’t make you can’t break.
    Why do you need one day each year to make you do what you should be doing anyway?

  3. Anonymous says:

    And avoid disappointment .. again..

  4. safc4ever says:

    I have a New Year Resolution – I need to get a job.

    I have already set in motion steps towards this aim, having just completed the Level 2 Certificate for Supporting Teaching and Learning in Schools. I am looking for a Teaching Assistant position in a Primary School in or around the London Borough of Bexley.

    Last year’s resolution was fulfilled. I vowed to be part of The Olympics. I was a volunteer performer in the Olympic Opening Ceremony and also volunteered as a Gamesmaker for both Games and as a London Ambassador during the ‘Transition’ between the Olympics and Paralympics.

  5. Steve Jones says:

    “1) Make only one resolution, your chances of success are greater when you channel energy into changing just one aspect of your behaviour.”

    A much better idea is to make two opposite resolutions. That way you can achieve a 50% success rate. For instance :-

    I will to eat well, lose weight and live healthily. It’s important to think of the future. You only live once.

    and

    I will enjoy my life, eat and do what I whatever I feel at the time. It’s important to live in the moment. You only live once.

    I think I have it covered.

  6. Gail Hatton says:

    i want to lose 3 stone, Ive lost over 5 stone in a year, and cant wait to reach my goal weight by my birthday.

    • Justine Smith says:

      Hi Gail, well done on the weight loss so far! :-) Send me your height and weight and your email address and I will work out a personalised programme for you. Let me know what your goal weight is and when your birthday is and I’ll help you get there x
      maximiseyourhealth@yahoo.co.uk

  7. amelie says:

    Great advice! 2 years ago I realized my resolutions were not working so I tried something completely different: make one change every month that would benefit the environment. I began with easy ones. January: switch to travel mugs instead of disposable. Feb: switch to cloth bags. Later ones were more challenging: give up paper towels, start a compost pile.

    2 years in and despite a few snags I’ve made many improvements that, surprisingly, have made my life better as well. I’m not sure why these worked so much better than personal resolutions but maybe some day I’ll figure it out.

  8. Chad says:

    Great article, but I would like to add one caveat. It may not always be the best idea to tell others what your resolution is. In many cases it’s a great strategy, but it could backfire. http://dft.ba/-3hJZ

  9. [...] | The stats don’t lie. According to resolution research conducted by noted psychology professor Richard Wiseman at the University of Bristol, in England, 78 percent of those he sampled who made New Year’s resolutions failed to achieve [...]

  10. Another view of this issue from the incomparable Mr Munroe :-)
    http://xkcd.com/1154/

  11. Stu says:

    Except….what an abysmally timed post! To post on New Year’s Day that….

    “2) Don’t wait until New Year’s Eve to think about your resolution and instead take some time out a few days before and reflect upon what you really want to achieve.”

    …seems completely useless advice.

    Richard – don’t forget to suggest extra lifeboats on the Titanic as well…..

  12. [...] Happy New Year! Have you made a resolution? In 59 Seconds, I describe how best to keep your resolution….here are my 10 top tips, and a little video…. 1) Make only one resolution, your chances of success are greater … WordPress Hosting 2013 2013/01/01/how-to-keep-your-new-years … – Richard Wiseman WordPress Hosting 2013 Happy New Year! Have you made a resolution? In 59 Seconds, I describe how best to keep your resolution….here are my 10 top tips, and a little video…. 1) Make only one resolution, your chances of success are greater .. WordPress Hosting 2013 2013/01/01/how-to-keep-your-new-years … – Richard Wiseman [...]

  13. [...] In fact, according to a 2007 study by professor and psychologist Richard Wiseman, 88% of the people who make New Year’s resolutions fail to achieve their goal. (Click here for his latest blog post on “How to Keep your New Year’s Resolution.”) [...]

  14. [...] links to articles about how to motivate oneself to change, how to make meaningful resolutions and stick to them, how to set goals, how to Change Your Life, basically. Tell everyone. Don’t tell [...]

  15. ladymac says:

    I never make New years resolutions-suspect they were invented by puritanical types to ruin a holiday. Best time for any self-improvement is when it’s needed, whatever time of year.Gave up spoiling New Year’s ages ago-never been sorry.

  16. [...] How to keep your new year’s resolution- Richard Wiseman PAL Fact Sheet- Goal Setting [...]

  17. [...] A quick internet search shows that the latter question is one pondered by many.  This blog post by Leo Widrich delves into the issue and explains, citing scientific references, that a resolution that is not abstract but tied to a particular behaviour, is more likely to be achieved.  Acclaimed British psychologist Richard Wiseman provides some tips on how to keep a new year resolution here. [...]

  18. [...] *http://www.quirkology.com/UK/Experiment_resolution.shtml You can find a video of Wiseman’s own keys to achieving you New Year’s resolutions, along with lots of other fun articles and psychological tricks, at http://richardwiseman.wordpress.com/2013/01/01/how-to-keep-your-new-years-resolution-2/ [...]

  19. [...] How to keep your New Years Resolution…. (richardwiseman.wordpress.com) [...]

  20. [...] could make the focus of this challenge my exam, but as Richard Wiseman discovered when researching new year’s resolutions you’re more likely to just make yourself frustrated if you just keep repeating the same [...]

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  22. […] don’t fall from so great a height that you can’t just get right back up again tomorrow. I’m not the first person to think of this, & I’m hardly a model of ultimate success, because look at me, but I have been doing […]

  23. […] been studying not only those who fail, but also those who succeed.  He’s been able to pinpoint the top five strategies to achieving your new year’s resolutions and making 2014 your year to reach your […]

  24. […] Wiseman (a professor of psychology who has studied New Year’s resolutions, and offered sound advice on how to stick to them), found the people who failed to stick to their resolutions tended to rely […]

  25. […] Richard Wiseman tracked 5,000 individuals in their New Year’s resolutions. Only 10% achieved their goals. One of the key things the 10% did to succeed was break their overall goal into a series of steps, […]

  26. […] with the help of a mentor. So, seek social support to achieve your goals. Richard Wiseman also suggests that we should share our goals with our friends and family. By doing so, we feel the fear of […]

  27. […] Richard Wiseman tracked 5,000 individuals in their New Year’s resolutions. Only 10% achieved their goals. One of the key things the 10% did to succeed was break their overall goal into a series of steps, […]

  28. […] Richard Wiseman tracked 5,000 individuals who made New Year’s resolutions. Only 10% achieved their goals. Dr. Wiseman noted that the top 10% who actually stuck to it were those who regularly reminded […]

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