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The Student News Site of The American School in Japan

HANABI

The Student News Site of The American School in Japan

HANABI

The Student News Site of The American School in Japan

HANABI

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Why We Fail to Stick to Our New Year’s Resolutions (and How to Succeed)

Why+We+Fail+to+Stick+to+Our+New+Year%E2%80%99s+Resolutions+%28and+How+to+Succeed%29
Reading Time: 2 minutes

With winter break around the corner, for many it’s a time for reflection on the past year and looking ahead toward the new year. Around the world, various cultures celebrate the new year in different ways, however, a common theme of many celebrations is goal-setting. But how likely are we to actually stick with our New Year’s resolutions??

A done by the University of Scranton found that only 8% of people accomplish their New Year’s goals. How many times have you set goals such as “study harder” or “eat healthier” year after year? If you’re setting the same goals every year, it’s clear that they aren’t being accomplished.?

So why is it that so few of us stick to our New Year’s resolutions?

One reason is people tend to make unrealistic goals that they aren’t capable of accomplishing. Peter Herman, a psychology professor at the University of Toronto, and his colleagues “false hope syndrome.” False hope syndrome is when we set ourselves unreasonable expectations, and this overconfidence leads to disappointment in the long run.

Reaching goals involves changing our behaviors, but the consciousness needs to change before the behavior does. Albert Einstein said, “We cannot solve a problem on the level of consciousness that created it.” To solve a problem or achieve a goal, we need to change our perspective from the mindset that created the original problem.?

Another reason is that the goal may be too vague and we don’t have a specific plan to achieve it. A goal is only a wish if it has no plan. If we want to change, we need sustained action that moves us toward completing the goal even if there are struggles or obstacles along the way.?

Here are some of my recommendations so that you can reach your New Year’s resolution in 2024:

  • Choose one goal to focus on and be specific about it. Instead of saying you want to “exercise more,” a more measurable goal would be “exercise 30 minutes a day” or “join a new sport.” You’ll feel more accomplished when you can check these more specific goals off your list.?
  • Find someone to help you be accountable for your goal. You could find a friend with the same goal—for example, a gym buddy or a study group—to help encourage you. It’s hard to make big changes alone, which is why it’s helpful to have someone to motivate you even when you want to give up.
  • And finally, give time for your goal to become a habit. On average, it takes 66 days for a habit to form, according to a in the European Journal of Psychology. Be patient with yourself and persevere through setbacks. Eventually, working towards your goal will become a natural habit.
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About the Contributor
Romi Shelton, Writer
Hi! I'm Romi, a current freshman at 好色tv. I was born in New York City and grew up in New Jersey and Tokyo. I enjoy drawing, reading, writing, playing guitar, and playing volleyball. As a writer, I love learning and writing about new and relevant topics.

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