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Making Effective New Year’s Resolutions

New Year is a great time to make resolutions to help you achieve goals that have been on your radar for a long time.  Whether you usually make resolutions during this time of year or not, studies have found that people who make resolutions are 10 times more likely to attain their goals than people who don’t explicitly make resolutions. However old habits have a way of  testing your resolve and many people end up giving up on their resolutions after only a few weeks of making them.


Below are 6 strategies to help you plan and achieve your goals for the coming year:


  • Pick Specific Resolutions that Mean Something to You:  A resolution has a much better chance of sticking if it truly means something to you.  This year instead of  resolutions to ‘eat better, get fitter, study more, or do more extracurricular activities’ try instead to be specific and make a resolution you are passionate about such as ‘play football more’, ‘increase English grades from a B to an A’ or ‘become captain of the Hockey team. The more specific you are, the more likely you will be able to succeed as you will have a clear idea of what you want and most likely a specific path to get it.


  • Write Your Resolutions Down: A study conducted by Stanford University found that when people wrote down their goal the probability of them achieving it increased by over 70%.   Don’t just write down the specific goal but why you want to succeed in completing your resolution, how long you are giving yourself to achieve it and how you will go about it.


  • The Journey is Just as Important as the Destination: Any worthwhile goal will not be instantly achievable. Remember to achieve your resolutions you will require persistent effort.  It is also worthwhile reminding yourself that while your resolution may be important to you the process of achieving it is of equal importance.  For example what is more impressive the fact that you achieved your goal to run 5km in under 25 minutes or that you spent every other morning training for your goal, no matter how tired you felt and whatever the weather?


  • Break Your Resolutions Into Bite-Sized Goals:  Sometimes achieving our resolutions can be daunting as we undertake large and challenging tasks.  Remember to break your resolution down into smaller goals which are easier to achieve.  Recognise your success and record all the effort you put in and soon you will see that you are closer to achieving your resolution than you think.


  • Narrow Your Efforts:  Don’t take on too many resolutions at once which can lead to a lack of focus and mean that instead of achieving one goal you don’t achieve any.  Start the year off strong with one important and achievable resolution and once that is complete add another to your list.


  • Failure Can Make You Stronger: Everyone slips up now and again when it comes to changing habits and pushing their limits to achieve challenging goals.  Failure does not mean the end of your journey to achieving your resolution.  Making mistakes can make you stronger as you examine where you slipped up and how to make sure it doesn’t happen again.  Remember your failures don’t define you but how you react to them does!


Students under Study Links guardianship can contact their mentor for further support with planning and achieving goals in 2019!

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