Here are a few tips to keep you on track the whole year:
1. BE SPECIFIC: Vague goals will not work. You’ve got to develop a specific plan of action and map out your strategy. For example; you want to save money. Determine the amount you will put aside each month and identify explicit changes in behavior you’ll make to get there, whether that means skipping your afternoon latte or carpooling to work to save on fuel costs.
2. Make Your Goal Public: Share your decision to change with friends and family who can offer support when you’re wavering and encouragement when you’re doing well at sticking to your goal.
3. Substitute Good Behaviors for “Bad”: Don’t rely on willpower alone to help you change. Instead, build in a replacement healthy behavior that’s incompatible with the one you want to change. So if eating your usual mid-afternoon treat runs contrary to your goal of dropping a few pounds, put together a small like-minded group and commit to taking a quick, brisk walk at your normal snack time. Each time you put the brakes on “bad” behavior, you’ll increase your confidence in your ability to make the change.
4. Track Your Progress: Record or chart your changes. Research indicates that such ‘self-monitoring’ increases the probability of your change becoming more of a consistent behavior.