Sticking to those pesky new year’s resolutions

Each new year gives people a chance to change themselves in massive ways and to wash off the events of the previous year.

I personally love New Year’s. I love the opportunity to reinvent myself and grow up. However, there are things that irk me about New Year’s and the subsequent resolutions: the lack of commitment. Here’s to hoping that in 2011, the millions that promise to make some sort of improvement actually keep their promise.

Maybe these resolutions would be easier to keep if they were simpler. Something along the lines of, “I’m going to get a regular haircut.” That’s doable. People keep coming up with these outlandish resolutions to radically change their bodies or do a complete attitude overhaul. It’s ridiculous.

Keep it simple. This way you won’t get bogged down and upset with something that should make you happy.

To make your resolution easier to keep, schedule it. I know for a fact if I don’t write something down, it isn’t getting done. When you make time to complete your resolution, you’ll find yourself actually doing it. You’ll also find yourself being more productive since you are actually scheduling different activities into specific blocks of time. Who doesn’t love that feeling?

To make your resolution less daunting, allow yourself a few days to “slack.” It’s easier to quit something gradually than to quit it cold turkey. If you are trying out a new diet, allow yourself a piece of chocolate every other day until you wean yourself off of it completely.

New Year’s resolutions aren’t about eliminating the things you enjoy out of your life, but giving you an opportunity to start a fresh year being the best you can.

Resolutions shouldn’t be stressful. Self-improvement isn’t easy, but it definitely shouldn’t be impossible. In my eyes, the most important component of New Year’s resolutions is being honest with yourself. Don’t make a resolution to save a failing relationship.

A new year really is about a new you, an improved you. It is a time when it is completely permissible to cut the people out of your life who haven’t proved themselves worthy of staying in it during the past 12 months.

The most important way to keep a resolution is to write it out. By writing out your resolution and re-reading it daily, you are more likely to maintain focus and “every time you’re tempted to slip, the full weight of what you’d be giving up will be right in your face,” Huffington Post contributors Jodi Lipper and Cerina Vincent wrote.

Another important part of keeping resolutions is to make these promises to yourself throughout the year, rather than waiting to make life changes in one day.

“Possibly the best way to keep your resolutions as the year progresses is to change whatever it is in your life that needs changing as soon as you realize that it does,” Lipper and Vincent write. By fixing things in your life immediately, you will save yourself a lot of headache after the new year begins.

Overall, a new year is just a built-in second chance to fix any and everything about your life. So please, use it wisely.

Whatever your resolution may be, just be sure that it is something that will make you happy and something that you are truly doing for yourself. This is your year to make yourself the best you can be, without collapsing under the pressure of resolutions. Remember, resolutions should be fun, not stressful.