"You may have a fresh start anytime you choose."
- Mary Pickford
As a society, we put a lot of stock in making New Year's resolutions. You may have heard the phrase, "New year. New me!" People set their sights on losing weight, saving money and maintaining healthy and productive habits. Unfortunately, the statistics tell us that sticking to resolutions fades as the year progresses. While less than half of people report being successful with their resolutions at six months, only one in ten is still successful by the end of the year. So what happens to the other 90 percent?
There are a number of reasons why resolutions don't stick, with unrealistic goals and not tracking progress being the top contenders. The big problem with abandoning New Year's resolutions is that so many people will wait until the following January 1st to make another attempt at improving their quality of life. While a new year is synonymous with a fresh start, it can also have us making excuses for why we don't start any resolutions in the summer or a random Tuesday in October. We should not only be setting life improving goals for ourselves once a year. It should be a year-round effort, especially if and when we fall off.
Not sticking to New Year's resolutions happens. Life gets in the way. Our motivation and dedication slips. We are only human. Timing can get in the way too. This is why any time is a great time to start a healthy habit or quit an unhealthy one. It's much more important to stay committed to a new way of life than waiting around for some special date or event in order to begin. We can always make excuses for why we are not ready. We have to decide how bad we really want it. If we want it bad enough, we should have started yesterday. Picking arbitrary dates to start is a way of kicking the can down the road.
We don't need a new year to create a newer and better version of ourselves. We need a new mindset where we are ready to stay committed to our goal. We need a belief in ourselves to accomplish what we set out to do. We need to reach out for help if we find ourselves slipping. The day we start does not matter at all compared to the results. It's more about preventing the day we stop. It does not matter what day we start if we don't stay consistent and committed to a new way of living. We can even start today.
Very Well Mind: 10 Great Tips for Keeping Your Resolutions This Year
Lifehack: 18 Tricks to Make New Habits Stick
Cleveland Clinic: 11 Simple Health Habits Worth Adopting Into Your Life