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Sticking to a New Year’s resolution can be tricky sometimes. While the focus on achievement is still fresh, we’d suggest bookmarking this article as a way to keep yourself motivated throughout the whole year.

Regardless of all the energy and enthusiasm brought about by a new year, unfortunately, much of that fervor begins to peter away by February. Knowing this, we’ve put together a list of 5 tips that will help you manage your resolutions and successfully achieve them! 

1. Question Your Motives 

When it comes to everything in your life, always remember to question your motives: “Am I staying true to me?” Whether you’re looking to get fit, learn a new language, or audition to become the next American Idol, ask yourself if you want those things for the right reason. Do you want to get fit because you’re unhappy with your body, or do you want to be healthier? Do you want to learn a new language to impress someone else, or is it something you desire to enhance your skills and expand your horizons? And do you want to become the next American Idol because you’re a huge J-Lo fan and just want to be around her, or do you have the chops and really have to flaunt them? In any of those cases, there’s a positive motive and a not-so-positive motive. Make changes because they make you a better person—for YOU, not for anyone else. 

2. Make Every Resolution Manageable

Seriously, this is an easy one. If you want to achieve your resolutions, make them last, turn them into habits, then they’ve got to be manageable. You want to be healthier? Instead of telling yourself you’re going to hit the gym 6-times a week, how about maybe saying you’re going to aim for 2-times a week, but will attempt other exercises the rest of the days (walking after dinner, taking the stairs, going on hikes). Manageability is key. 

3. Make it Measurable

Any resolution you make should be specific and measurable. If it’s too vague, you’re going to have trouble realizing where success lies, and may find yourself discouraged because of this. This is easily avoidable. Instead of saying, “I want to get fit,” consider how exactly you’re going to get from point A to point B. Choose a more specific result, “I want to go to the gym twice a week and eat healthy five days a week.” Much better.

4. Hold Yourself Accountable

While there is no one that is going to push you to achieve your resolutions (unless you pay lots of money for it, and we don’t have that kind of cash lyin’ around), you need to push yourself and stay accountable. One great way to do this is let others know what you’re doing. Tell your family or friends about the resolutions you’re trying to keep. Putting it out into the world that you are being held accountable for sticking to your resolutions makes a huge difference.

5. Be Forgiving, Stay Positive

Knowing that so many resolutions can lose steam by spring, recognize that the “Ah, screw it” mentality will be the demise of your plans for success. Be forgiving, and know that every day is a new day. If you skipped a day, a week, or even a month, the very next day you pick up where you left off is where you kick failure in its teeth. There is no one on this Earth who hasn’t stumbled in their path to success in some form—so don’t ever beat yourself up about it. Take a deep breath and pick up where you left off. Stay positive! Every move you make towards positive change is a success in itself, and you should reward yourself for that. 

Stay strong, stay focused, and stay positive!