Many people make New Year’s Resolutions because they are hoping to reach some of their goals that they feel are important in their lives. A new year can begin at various times. The beginning of a new calendar year is probably the most common time for making resolutions. However, some people make resolutions to work on their goals for the following year on their birthday and others choose to make them at the beginning of a new school year. Whenever you decide to look at your life and make decisions about what you want to focus on to accomplish your goals, here are some tips on making resolutions that may change your life.
- List the steps you need to take to keep your resolution. It is fine to write down that you will study harder or that you will improve your feedback to your students. However, to carry out the resolution you need to know what you will do to reach that goal. For example, “I will study for 2 hours per day – an hour in the morning after breakfast and an hour before dinner in the afternoon.” Or “I will write an e-mail to each student once every two weeks to give constructive feedback and to encourage them to ask questions or tell me about any problems they are having.”
- Allow time on a regular basis to check out how you are doing. If you allow yourself this time, you will be able to get back on track, if you need to, before you feel overwhelmed. This will keep your stress level lower and help you to think more clearly about what is going well and what needs to change to be successful. Aim to do this at least once per week and preferably every day.
- Make only 2 or 3 resolutions at the most. If you make a long list of resolutions, you will not be able to keep all of them and that will make you feel discouraged. Having just one resolution that you really work on will give you a good feeling when you see the progress you are making. Two or three in different parts of your life can be accomplished but keep others that you want to make for later in the year when the first few are well established in your life.
- Post your resolutions someplace that you will see them every day. That way you cannot forget about it. You will be more likely to accomplish it if you are reminded every day.
- Share your goal with someone who will be supportive. A friend or family member who can encourage you and keep you accountable can really help you to stick to your resolution. If you have absolutely no one you feel comfortable sharing with, then pretend that all your actions are being broadcast publicly so that you will do the important things and skip the unimportant ones. It will help you to look at yourself as others would see you and motivate you to be seen as you would like to be seen.
My resolution is to learn to speak Spanish more fluently. I am planning to spend an hour per day studying the grammar and vocabulary. Since I tend to avoid speaking Spanish because I do not speak it “perfectly” (in fact far from it) I will also practice speaking the language with a person who speaks fluently for at least a half hour per day. I will post how I am doing once per week in the forum. Join me there with your resolutions and we can all support each other.