Congratulations! You made it to another year and survived. You said “bye bye bye” to 2018 (please sing that line in your head as if NSYNC was having a private concert for you and at the end, they smash a giant 2018 glass figurine to really show the symbolism of moving on). Now out with the old and in with the new. 2019 is going to be your year! You’ve made your resolutions and you’ve already hit them hard and feeling super motivated.

The issue is you are probably like me and had similar goals for last year, and about March, you said “bye bye bye” to carrots and “hello, is it me you’re looking for?” to cake. So why didn’t they stick? Why aren’t you ripped beyond belief and have that dream job you wanted and have all the friends you were planning to make this year?

Changing routines and your life all at once is a daunting task. And it is exhausting (cue small violin playing just for you). I get it. I’ve been right there with you every year. I was on my workouts until I hurt my back in April and then had a bunch of trips, then it was summer and who wants to be in a gym in the summer? I’ll just run outside… but it’s really too hot to run outside… Fast forward 8 months later and here I am just starting my workouts again.

But this year will be different. Why? Because I’ve made a few changes (and done the research like the nerd I am) and figured out the top 5 things that will make my New Year’s Resolutions stick (and they can help you too).

1. Be specific.

Did you say last year you were going to get in shape and eat healthy? That is not tangible enough. Mine now reads “workout 3 times a week for at least 30 minutes and eat non-processed, whole foods, and limit my sugar.” See the difference? Just saying you need to workout doesn’t define what a workout is to you. The more specific you are, the better here.

2. Be realistic & make it obtainable.

OK yes, I was specific with what I was going to eat, great. But let’s get real. Friday night is going to come and I’m going to want a burger and fries after a long week at work and I’m going to have ran out of meal prepped food and too tired to cook. Then after I eat said burger, I’m going to feel guilty and say, “Well f*** this! I’m already off the bandwagon so who wants pizza for lunch tomorrow?”

The fix? I added “85% of the time” to my “non-processed, whole foods, and minimal sugar” goal. Friday night will come after eating well all week, and I’ll eat that burger and fries, enjoy it, then Saturday I’m back on it, still hitting my goal.

Make sure your goals are realistic and not something crazy like be at the gym 3 hours a day when that isn’t plausible in your day to day life.

3. Plan it & schedule it out.

One of my goals every year is to read more, but last year I never made time for it because I didn’t schedule it into my life. This year, I’ve incorporated it into my nightly routine. Instead of watching TV until I fall asleep, I get ready for bed at 9, then I read until I fall asleep.

Another example is meal prepping. You have to think about what you are going to eat and have that meal ready when hunger strikes, because it is very easy to eat back when you are hangry. So meal prep on Sunday before the work week so you will be ready to hit that goal out of the park!

Same with the gym. Pick a time and a place and show up. Done. Moving on.

4. Have an accountability buddy.

It feels good to tell people all your hopes and dreams and your New Year’s resolutions. Even just telling people decreases your odds of actually accomplishing it (See this article for psychological proof).

So don’t tell everyone, but do tell one person, and have them hold you accountable. Find a workout buddy that has been going to the gym for a while and let her know you are going to join her. (This is key here. Don’t latch on to a buddy that is more likely to say “I’m too tired to get up”. Find someone that is already in the routine or someone you know will not let you down when the 6 AM alarm goes off). Tell her to bug you and make you go even when you don’t want to (give her permission to stalker call you in the morning to make sure you are up for the workout).

For me, I have my 6 AM boot camp class friends that call me out when I’m not there. I felt REAL silly when I showed up the other day for the first time in 8 months. They didn’t take a break and I did, so now I’m motivated to not do that again because they hold me accountable and ask questions why they hadn’t seen me for 8 months.

I also have a side business buddy, Amanda. We share ideas, aspirations, and keep each other motivated when life gets in the way of our passions. She keeps me going when I’ve had a hard day and want to give up. (P.S. Shameless plug for her business Simply Messy. Check it out!)

Find your buddy and help each other achieve your goals, then once you achieve them, THEN tell everyone you know what you did! Boom!

5. Don’t break promises to yourself.

If you follow me on social media, you know my obsession with Rachel Hollis. She has been such an inspiration to me these past few months and I’m reaching more goals because of her advice. One of her big things is not breaking promises to yourself. You wouldn’t break a promise to a friend so why are you breaking promises to yourself?

New Year’s Eve being on a Monday this year made me feel like I needed to start a day early with my resolutions. Even though I hadn’t planned anything out yet on the 31st, I had gone to a goal setting night with some amazing ladies the night before and was really feeling motivated.

That morning after I had woken up not sure what time it was, I told myself, “If it’s 5:30, I’m going to get up and go to my 6 AM workout class I haven’t been to in 8 months”. I turn over, look at my phone and guess what? 5:29! I was kind of mad I had made that promise to myself in the moment because really I thought there is no way it would be 5:30. 4:30 would allow me to go back to sleep. 5:45 wouldn’t give me enough time to get there so I’d be snoozing there too. But almost 5:30 on the dot? That meant I had to get up because I don’t break promises to myself anymore. So I got up and was there, and I’m so glad I did! It really started my New Year off right.

Don’t break promises to yourself. Just don’t do it. Be realistic about what you can get done, then stick with it. I believe in you and Happy New Year!

Leave a comment below and let me know your thoughts. How are you going to stick with your resolutions?

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