Jumpstart your New Year's resolution -- now!
Want to kick off your New Year's resolution before the ball drops? Here are some great ways to set yourself up for success!
Chances are you're just starting to think about what your New Year's resolution should be. Why wait till January 1 to take action? Here are a few ways to launch successful resolutions that will stick.
Brainstorm your goal then narrow it down
You don't have to pick one resolution — you can choose many! But if you're accustomed to choosing one, think about what you want. To lose weight? Try to be more specific. To go back to school? Explore the possibilities and narrow it down to what degree you want.
A goal shouldn't be broad. You want to note how many pounds you want to lose (and maybe then your resolution isn't to lose 10 pounds but to exercise three times a week). Or you want to make your resolution to be enrolled in that bachelor of nursing program by spring semester. Think about what you want and make a specific goal out of it — and write it down.
Start thinking about the resolution
Process your goal now so you can really think about measurable steps you need to attain the resolution. Perhaps starting to journal about it is a good way to start thinking and processing it all. Do you need to enlist a friend to be your buddy — or recruit a support system? What, logistically, do you need to begin? If you're quitting smoking or lowering your caffeine intake, for example, you can start now so you are off the chemicals by 2012!
Line up support for your goals
Choosing a resolution isn't really hard — there are things we all want. But if you're planning on paying off debt or quitting smoking, it's good to have support. Now is a valuable time to line up the support so you are ready to roll on January 1. Maybe you can join a financial support group or find a Meetup.com for those looking to quit smoking. The point is that you will have this in place before January 1 so you can hit the ground running then. Don't just tell others what you are doing — let them know what you need. It can be hard to lean on others but finding those that can relate or want to lend support is helpful.
Share your resolution
Here's a cool Facebook status: Share your resolution with your friends today. Not only will it inspire them to start working on their goals, but it will also provide additional support. Let your friends know that you have a plan to start training for a 10K, are dedicated to stopping your incessant nail-biting habit, or that you will be drinking eight glasses of water a day. And don't wait — get started now!
Download an app
There are plenty of mobile phone apps to help you track your progress. If you are losing weight or starting an exercise plan, try Lose It or Fitness Free. Trying to get a handle on your financial debts? Check out Pay Off Debt. If you're trying to kick a nicotine habit, try Quitter. There are apps for just about everything; now's a great time to explore apps, download them and figure out how to use them.
Whatever you want to do, it's a great time to start planning for it. Build up momentum so you get excited about it, secure support, and are set up to achieve your resolutions!