According to the research institute Statistic Brain, nearly half of all Americans – 45 percent – usually make a New Year’s resolution every year, of which only 8 percent successfully achieve it.
One reason that so few people accomplish what they set out to do is because their resolutions may be unrealistic. For example, going to the gym every day may sound like a great idea but may not be workable within the constraints of everyday life.
Setting attainable resolutions for the New Year can keep you on track as well as help you to work toward more lofty goals in the future.
Here’s our list of 10 easy New Year’s resolutions that you can actually keep this year:
1. Stop procrastinating. Don’t put off until tomorrow what you can do today. Apply this approach to specific goals, such as not waiting until the hamper is overflowing before doing the laundry.
2. Be nice to everybody. “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you” is called the “golden rule” for a reason. Make a conscious effort to be nice to everybody you encounter throughout your day.
3. Be forgiving. We’ve all likely hurt someone we know or care about. Having compassion and letting go of a grudge or feeling of ill will can be a positive step and highly rewarding, as well as a great example and lesson to teach kids.
4. Learn something new. We’re never too old to learn something new. Whether taking up cooking lessons or a new language or a new hobby, the possibilities are endless.
5. Cut down on screen time. Are you spending a ton of time in front of screens, from cell phones and mobile devices to computers to television sets? Commit to spending one waking hour a day completely devoid of any screen.
6. Stop late-night snacking. Weight-related resolutions account for 38 percent of resolutions, according to Statistic Brain. Rather than make a general “I want to lose weight” resolution, try to make it specific and actionable. Cutting out late-night snacking is a great way to start.
7. Floss more often. Your dentist and your gums will thank you.
8. Declutter your inbox. Remember all of the newsletters and mailing lists you subscribed to last year, whether intentionally or otherwise? Set aside time to sort through and unsubscribe to those that you never use. While you’re at it, sort through and delete emails that you don’t need.
9. Clean out your closet. Do you have clothes in your closet that you rarely or no longer wear? Consider donating anything that you haven’t worn in a long time. Also, try to make it a rule that whenever you buy something new, you get rid of or donate something that’s taking up space in your closet, unworn.
10. Enjoy every moment with loved ones. Your children grow up so fast. Take a moment to appreciate and relish the time you spend with them and with your partner, parents, and other loved ones. Make it a point to do things together as often as possible and to live in the moment. You’ll be spreading happiness for them and for you, and creating memories that can last a lifetime.