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Top 10 New Year’s resolutions and how to make them last

New Year’s resolutions often lose their charm as we progress into other months of the year.

What are your New Year's resolutions? (Photo: Gettyimages)
What are your New Year's resolutions? (Photo: Gettyimages)

It is the start of a new year and also the time to make some resolutions (again). In the beginning of the year, it is easy to feel inspired to do something different this year. But often, New Year’s resolutions lose their charm as we progress into other months of the year.

New Year’s resolutions may vary from person to person depending on individual goals, priorities, and aspirations. However, here are the 10 most common New Year’s resolutions that many people consider and how you can make them last.

1. Get fit and healthy

Looking back at the past year, many would find that they did not try to stay active or eat healthily. When a new year hits, we end up making the resolution (again) to get fit and healthy. To help you stick to this resolution, you can develop a detailed plan outlining the steps you need to take, such as having a regular exercise routine and a balanced and nutritious diet—both of which must suit your lifestyle.

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2. Lose weight

Similar to getting fit and healthy, losing weight is also one of the most common New Year’s resolutions. But it is easy to lose track if you don’t set realistic goals. For instance, losing five kilograms in a week would be almost impossible. But when you stretch it out to a month or two, it can be achieved with healthier food choices, controlled portion sizes and regular exercise.

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3. Save money

Apart from health, financial worries are also many people’s top concerns. One of the best ways to help you save money is to break it down into smaller, achievable goals. Rather than saying you want to save S$10,000 this year, which feels like too big a sum, you can say you want to save S$840 per month, which sounds more feasible. You can also create a monthly budget to see how you can allocate your income accordingly.

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4. Learn a new skill or hobby

Personal or professional development is also one of the things people want to work on every year. However, you can take it one step further by being specific on what exactly you want to improve on, whether it is learning how to cook, how to manage your finances, or how to practise yoga at home.

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5. Quit smoking or reduce alcohol intake

We all know some things are not good for our bodies, such as smoking and consuming too much alcohol. Apart from setting consumption limits, you can stay accountable by sharing your resolutions and journey with your friends and family. Besides, they can also offer you support and encouragement when you feel unmotivated.

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6. Improve mental health

Mental health has been an increasing concern over the years as stress builds up in our lives. This is also why apart from taking care of our physical health, more people are prioritising their mental health as well. As this can feel like a lonely process, it would help you stay on track if you seek support to practise stress-reducing activities or mindfulness with a group of like-minded individuals.

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7. Travel more

The wanderlust in you may crave to explore new places and cultures. But since we often have multiple commitments, it is difficult to embark on a trip as and when we want. So, it is important to be flexible and adjust and adapt your resolutions accordingly. If you can’t travel a lot to broaden your horizons, consider tweaking your resolution to travel to different destinations every year, which will still give you new experiences.

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8. Spend quality time with family and friends

Work takes up most of our time, which causes us to neglect our loved ones. Especially for workaholics, prioritising relationships is one of the top New Year’s resolutions. But as you get buried under your pile of work, you may forget the reasons behind your resolutions. You can stay mindful of your motivations by writing down your resolutions on a piece of paper and putting it somewhere you’ll see every day.

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9. Read more

Despite being a good practice, reading is often the first thing we throw out of the window when we “don’t have time.” While it still makes it into most people’s New Year’s resolutions, it won’t last if you don’t set a reading goal for the year. You can keep a journal or use an app to track your progress and celebrate small victories along the way to maintain your motivation.

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10. Volunteer or give back

Apparently, not all New Year’s resolutions are about the individual. People are also concerned about a cause or community and want to give their time, skills, or resources to make a positive impact. You can establish a habit by consistently practising them, such as signing up for a regular volunteer programme. Habits are also more likely to stick when repeated regularly.

As you work on your resolutions this year, remember to stay positive and learn from setbacks. Focus on the progress you’ve made and treat setbacks as opportunities to grow. Last but not least, reward yourself after you’ve hit a milestone, which will help you reinforce positive behaviour. After all, New Year's resolutions are a journey, not a sprint.

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