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The start of a new year can be an opportunity to assess areas you want to improve and implement changes to get better. While resolutions can conjure feelings of good or bad and success or failure, therapists say setting intentions or giving yourself short-term objectives are a more doable and enjoyable way to create change. Once you start seeing progress, you will be motivated to continue

  1. Pick the resolution that means the most to you and write it down. You’re more likely to succeed if you can focus on a single goal, and according to Dave Ramsey, Financial advisor and author, you have a greater chance of achieving it if you write it down — on paper, on purpose.
  2. Reflect on your WHY. Make sure the resolution you choose is important to you, and you’re clear on why you want it. This will help you to push through in those moments you want to give up.
  3. Set benchmarks. Make that goal measurable by defining when you want it accomplished by and setting benchmarks to track your success. Write your benchmark down beneath your goal and plan for how you’re going to get it done.
  4. Find an accountability partner. A great accountability partner isn’t afraid to ask how your goals are coming along, and they’re not afraid to call you out when you’re slacking. Studies have shown that having a strong accountability partner increases the likelihood of achieving a goal dramatically.
  5. Reward yourself! Once you’ve reached that goal, don’t be afraid to reward yourself for your accomplishments and share with others the steps you took to get better. You never know who needs to hear your story to get started on their journey to the best version of themselves.