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Student Voice: How to Make Stress-Free Resolutions That Stick

By Allison Iwatake, originally published in The Plaid Post, a student-written and student-run publication with the mission of connecting Lincoln girls with what's happening monthly in the community and around the globe .

The New Year is a time for a fresh start. Now is the time when people set goals for themselves and make unrealistic promises. On January first, people flood to the gym and promise to work out every day. By February, most of these goals are abandoned. Desires to start eating healthy foods are overtaken by natural cravings that humans have, and goals to a better person are forgotten when faced with the harsh realities of the world. How can we make New Year’s Resolutions that we actually want to stick to? Here are a few tips on how to improve your resolutions in the New Year, no stress needed.

Tip #1: Start small.
Think about your life short-term; what do you want to improve? Try to centralize your focus to one small aspect of your life. After you accomplish that goal, you can set larger goals.

Tip #2: Be reasonable.
Once you have an idea of the small goal that you want to accomplish, it is time to think about reasonable ways to get there. Instead of trying to do everything at once, spread it out over a period of time that feels comfortable to you. Taking baby-steps is key to success so that you do not burn yourself out.

Tip #3: Step out of your comfort zone.
Even though you do not want to be overwhelmed by your goals, do not be afraid to step out of your comfort zone. When working towards your goals, you should feel like you are pushing yourself, but not too much that you get tired out. Any small risk that you take will benefit you in the long run.

Tip #4: Go easy on yourself.
Remember, humans make mistakes. If you find yourself getting off track, that is alright because you do not need to be on a set track. All you need to do is to head in the right direction, which is the one that you choose. Do not beat yourself up when you feel that you are not sticking to your resolutions; simply reset and try again.

Tip #5: Make goals for yourself all the time.
You do not need to wait until the next year to make a resolution. If you want to improve yourself, you should be making goals constantly. If you find that one of your resolutions is not right for you, you can find a new one. Just make sure that you are doing it for the right reasons.

In honor of 2018, here are 18 example resolutions:

-Find a way to speak up against injustice, either on paper or out loud.
-Read one book a month.
-Take one hour that is usually spent watching television to go outside.
-Spend less time checking social media
-Write down all of your plans/goals.
-Volunteer somewhere as often as possible.
-Talk to someone new.
-Take time to reflect and express appreciation.
-Practice a new language.
-Find a more effective way to study.
-Find an activity that alleviates your stress.
-Compliment someone new every day.
-Learn to prioritize.
-Walk/bike more, drive less.
-Reach out to an old friend.
-Apologize to the people that you have wronged.
-Be more honest.