A new year is such a wonderful time to evaluate your life and set new and exciting goals for the upcoming year. It’s no wonder an estimated 77% of people set New Year’s resolutions each year.

Unfortunately, as you may very well know, achieving those goals proves to be not as simple as setting them. Of those 77% of people, only about 19% achieve that goal over the course of 2 years. That’s only a 25% success rate!

If you don’t want to become another statistic this upcoming new year, we’re here to help. Read on to learn about some of the most common New Year’s resolutions, and how to actually achieve them!

Resolution #1: Exercise More

New year, new you. After a lax few weeks on holiday, it’s common to feel out of shape. That’s why one of the most common New Year’s resolutions is simple: exercise more!

Well, turns out, for most, that is easier said than done. Research shows that about 80% of people who purchase gym memberships in January quit after 5 months.

If you’re looking to make exercise a permanent part of this upcoming year, try the following tips.

  • Set a goal. You’ll have a much easier time motivating yourself to exercise if you can envision an end goal. Choose something like a marathon, a goal weight for lifting, or a target number of pushups. Use a fitness tracker to keep you accountable. And remember to invest in the equipment that can help you achieve your goal like the best shoes for marathon running.
  • Find a buddy. Humans are social animals and it’s always easier for us to do things in pairs. Find a workout buddy and commit to working out with them a few times a week. You can hold one another accountable and celebrate your successes together!
  • Keep a gym bag on hand. When you really don’t feel like working out, it’s easy to come up with a million and one excuses. By keeping a gym bag in your car, packed with your workout clothes and shoes, you’ll never have an excuse for not working out. You’ve got everything on hand; what are you waiting for?
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Achieve-Your-New-Year-Resolutions-scaled How to Actually Achieve Your New Year's Resolutions

Resolution #2: Eat Better

The holiday season is a notorious time of indulgence. It’s no wonder many see the new year as an opportunity to incorporate new, healthy habits into their lives. Many sum that up in a simple goal: eat better.

Each year brings a new fad diet, and while they can certainly help you shed pounds quickly, they often aren’t sustainable. True healthy eating is all about balance. Pick up the following habits to embrace a healthier lifestyle.

  • Find a balance. Extreme dieting and restriction aren’t just unsustainable; they’re unhealthy, too. Rather than restricting entire food groups, focus on balancing your meals. A good rule of thumb is to split your plate into quarters. One quarter should be proteins, one quarter should be carbs, and the last two quarters should be fruits and vegetables.
  • Keep healthy snacks on hand. Part of the reason unhealthy snacks are so tempting is because they’re so easy. There’s no prep required; just grab and eat. Replace those snacks with healthier ones by keeping pre-cut fruits and vegetables on hand, along with single serving yogurts, nut butters, and more. Carrot sticks, apple slices, cherry tomatoes and cucumbers, and celery sticks can all make satisfying snacks when mixed with a nutritious dip. By keeping these things on hand, you can grab them with ease!
  • Celebrate non-scale victories. Eating healthier isn’t all about that number on the scale. Healthy eating can change your life in so many ways, from increasing your stamina to building muscle. Celebrate these changes when you discover them!
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Resolution #3: Be Happier

Happiness is kind of a nebulous concept. Oftentimes, when we’re happy, we don’t even realize it. When we’re unhappy, on the other hand, we feel it deeply.

While “be happier’ sounds like such a simple resolution, it’s deceptively difficult. Here are our favorite ways to harness your happiness in the upcoming year.

  • Get lots of sleep. You know when a little kid skips their nap and becomes a real grump? Turns out, as adults, we’re not that different. There’s a direct correlation between your quality of sleep and your happiness levels. If you want to be happier, commit to sleeping 8 hours every night.
  • Get your body moving. Exercise has a direct effect on happiness, too. We’re not suggesting that you become a marathon runner, but make sure to move your body every day. Whether it’s a walk around the neighborhood or a morning yoga routine, it will help with your happiness!
  • Practice gratefulness. Happiness is a muscle, and if we don’t use it regularly, we can forget how. A great way to stretch your happiness muscle is to practice gratefulness every day. Make a list each day of 5 things you’re grateful for. Tell people regularly when you feel grateful for them. Happiness is infectious, and improving someone else’s day may very well improve yours!