Make a plan – You’re more likely to get things done if you know how, when, and where you’ll do them. Just saying you’ll do something isn’t enough. Identify the days, times and location of the activity. Make a contingency plan for when you’re short on time or money. 


Go back to basics – Rely on the tried-and-true changes that make for success. Use what’s worked in the past rather than reinventing the wheel. Ask experts and professionals for their advice and read up on how most people accomplished the same goal. 


Make a list – Write out all the benefits to accomplishing your goal. Focus on the “pros” instead of the “cons.” Use these to push you when you don’t feel up to the taskKnowing what you’ll get out of it helps draw you to action. 


Track your progress – Log, chart or graph to keep the quantitative (intake, reps, weight, etc.) measures of your journey visual. Reference it daily as motivation and a reminder of your achievements. Remember that most advancements aren’t linear, so look at overall progress. 


Get happy – Focus on the positive by identifying a small accomplishment each day. Believing in yourself may be the most important factor to success.* Recognizing small feats can give you the drive to accomplish larger ones. 


Recommit yourself – Pick yourself back up after a fall. Not everything goes according to plan (sigh). Having the resilience to get back to routine after a misstep is more important than not making any mistakes to begin with. 


Avoid temptations  Be sure you’re not in a situation that could lead you astray. Ahem, not next to the buffet or on a comfy sofa. Choose environments in line with your goals so you can avoid the “Should I or shouldn’t I?” internal battle.  


Reward yourself – When you hit a milestone, celebrate! (But not with something that will lead you to go in reverse 😊) Give yourself a pat on the back and something tangible, too. Perhaps make smaller weekly goals for a small pay-out, such as a magazine or video game. 


Reflect on your journey – How great did it feel to overcome the last challenge? Look at how far you’ve improved since starting. Like autumn, you are in a season of change that doesn’t happen all at once. Enjoy each step along your path. 


Call on friends for support – There is truly strength in numbers! Enlist a workout buddy or lunch pal to keep you on track. Even the verbal support of those close to you who aren’t physically nearby can lift you up and spur you to continue onward. 


Try something new – Now is the time to break up your routine and keep things interesting. Let your curiosity get the better of you. Attempt a new class, sample a different product, taste a new cuisine or give an innovative method a shot, providing it’s in line with your goals. 


Remember why you started – Bring those reasons to the forefront of your priorities. Think of this month as the last sprint to the finish line! If you’re behind don’t throw in the towel but double-down on your efforts to surge ahead. 


  1. “How to Keep Your New Year’s Resolutions: Research explains what works best.” The Bronfenbrenner Center for Translational Learning. Psychology Today. Dec. 26, 2017. Accessed Dec. 10, 2018. 

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