Making a new year's resolution
January 9, 2012
by Jenni Sebora

It is 2012, yet another New Year with new resolutions made. In fact, resolutions were made years ago by the Babylonians that focused on farming.

A New Year’s resolution is defined as “a commitment that a person makes to one or more lasting personal goals or projects, and it must be reached by the next New Year.”

Most resolutions made seem to stem around our personal health and fitness, personal finances, improving or enhancing our careers and or education, taking a trip, helping others in some fashion, improving our selves, such as reducing stress, taking time for ourselves, focusing on something positive.

Research shows that while a little over 50 percent are confident in the success of their resolution, only a little more than 10 percent actually achieved their goals. Another study revealed that of those who make a New Year’s resolution, 78 percent failed.

Why is it that our resolutions fail? Is it because they are too lofty and cannot really be obtained in a year? Is it because our energy starts to wane over time, and the achievement of the goal is put on the back burner?

My resolutions for the year are to take a family trip this summer, and continue to exercise and vamp up my exercise routine. These are pretty typical resolutions. In order to attain my goals, I need to break them up into small attainable objectives.

Each week, I have set up what I want to achieve as far as my exercise routine. This helps keep me on track. Now, I might venture off of it here and there as things may come up with my family’s activities; however, I need to stay close to that routine, so I feel success.

In fact, research shows that especially for men, resolution attainment success is highly increased when they set small attainable goals to get to their big goal. Success rate for women is increased when they share their goals with others and receive support in their resolution work.

This makes so much sense. When we receive support really for any goal, the success rate will go up. Setting small attainable steps makes the larger goal seem more achievable. It makes the ultimate goal seem not so overwhelming. And, of course, success feeds on success.

This goal-setting process is something that is beneficial to teach our children. Maybe a goal a son or daughter has is to improve their grades. How can he or she do this?

Help your child set up realistic obtainable and smaller objectives to reach that major goal. Maybe your child needs to change his or her study habits when they do their homework. Instead of waiting until bedtime to hit the books, he or she should have a snack and do homework when they are more alert and not tired. This will most likely improve the quality of their homework, which certainly will affect their grades.

Sources: Wikipedia, Macmillan dictionary

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