While many of us have New Year’s resolutions, not all of us can follow through with them.
Business Insider brings us a few research backed tips that will help us stick to our resolution longer, probably forever!
They referred to a Marist poll to find out the top most popular New Year’s resolutions and strategies on how to see them through.
The ‘Be Better’ Resolution
According to the Marist poll, being a better person is one of the most popular New Year’s resolutions. According to research, the best way to do it right is by answering the ‘daily questions’, i.e. a set of questions that have to be perused regularly to contemplate your journey towards betterment.
Business Insider explains:
“The exercise is used by psychologist, executive coach, and author Marshall Goldsmith. Here’s how it works:
- Start with an Excel spreadsheet and write down a series of important questions (Goldsmith has 32) about your experiences with friends, family, and co-workers. Goldsmith’s questions include “Did I do my best to build positive relationships?” and “How many minutes did you walk?”
- Then create seven boxes across, one for every day of the week. Every question is either answered with yes/no or a number. Goldsmith scores himself on a 1-10 scale, comparing yesterday’s effort with previous days.
- At the end of the week, create a report card”, reports Business Insider.
The Weight Loss Resolution
10% of the poll’s respondents said weight loss is their 2017 resolution, making it one of the most popular.
Research suggests that there is no one definite trick to drop weight, but maintaining a food journal definitely helps.
Business Insider reports:
“One study of overweight and obese women found that those who kept a food diary (in the form of a printed booklet) lost about six pounds more than those who didn’t. All participants were instructed to keep food diaries, but those who kept them consistently were more successful at losing weight.
“In other words, the idea that someone is watching what you eat — even if that someone is you — can help.”
The More Training Resolution
Training and exercise resolutions remain popular even for this year. The thing to remember is that the worst part about working out is to convince yourself to get to the gym.
“…behavioural economist and Duke University psychologist Dan Ariely previously told Business Insider, exercise is rarely as painful as we imagine it will be. After a few minutes, you might enjoy the sensation of your breath, the music coming through your headphones, and the sound of your feet hitting the ground.
“All those reasons why you “should” exercise — like getting stronger and looking better — will fade away”, reports Business Insider.
The “Savings” Resolution
7% of poll participants said that saving money will be their 2017 resolution.
Business Insider writes a trick brought forward by “Mr Money Moustache”:
“…thinking about money as something to invest, and not as something to spend. So for example, if you get a raise or a birthday gift, get into the mind set of investing it immediately instead of blowing it on clothes or a vacation.”
The Learning a New Language Resolution
Shana Lebowitz writes:
“Spaced repetition is a system that makes learning more efficient. In his book “Fluent Forever,” opera singer and polyglot Gabriel Wyner recommends this strategy for learning a foreign language. Here’s how it works, based on an example from the book:
If you can remember that “trabajo” is the Spanish word for work two months after learning it, the spaced-repetition system (SRS) will wait another four to six months before putting it back on your to-do list. But if you’re having trouble remembering that “computadora” means “computer” for more than two weeks, the system will put that word back on your to-list more often until you can finally remember it.”
The Quit Smoking Resolution
University of Massachusetts Medical School psychiatrist Judson Brewer says that mindfulness can be very effective while quitting smoking or any other bad habit.
“In one such study, instead of forcing the smokers to quit, Brewer and his colleagues gave them complete permission to continue — but the participants were asked to be mindful about how smoking made them feel. They were told to smell the cigarette and think about what it smelled like, then take a drag of the cigarette and notice what it tasted like.
“Results showed that mindfulness was twice as effective at helping people quit as a standard training called Freedom From Smoking. That’s likely because mindfulness helps you observe your cravings and your behaviour up close, without getting sucked into them”, reported Business Insider.
The Online Dating Resolution
While online dating no longer has any stigma, it can be incredibly tough. Tinder sociologist Jess Carbino says, including a question in your bio can be a good conversation starter for your matches. Questions like vacation destinations or favourite artists tend to instigate a better response and conversations.
The New Job Resolution
Business Insider relays the advice of Dave Evans and Bill Burnett, Stanford Design professors, to help you find the right kind of job.
“Burnett and Evans recommend keeping a “Good Time Journal,” or a catalogue of the tasks you enjoy most and least in your current work.
“The first component of the journal is the activity log, where you list your primary activities and how engaged and energised you were while doing them. “The second component is reflection, which involves reviewing your activity log and noticing any patterns or surprises.
“The authors recommend keeping the journal for three weeks. That way, you can see what type of job to look for going forward or realise that you can keep your current job and talk to your manager about eliminating the parts you hate,” writes Lebowitz.
The Family Time Resolution
Author and Time Management guru Laura Vanderkam suggests working a few hours from home every weekend. This step could be instrumental in managing office work better and hence being available for the family more often throughout the week.
Follow these tricks for your 2017 resolutions, and have a fitter and better year ahead!