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Ring In the New Year With Resolutions

) Katrina Gadong |

The week between Christmas and New Year's provides the perfect space to reflect on the past 365 days and look forward for the new one, ideally with all the boxes of that 2018 new year's resolutions list ticked off and ready to fill out 2019's. More often than not, however, we will always have at least an item unchecked and are tempted to bump it/them up to next year's goals. And, somehow, this becomes a yearly habit.

It's easy to fall into the "new year, new you" trap of thinking things will magically fall into place just because it's the start of something new (day, week, month, or year). You think you will be this extremely motivated go-getter that can do anything, yet end up stumbling and having a hard time catching up on what seems to be an endless to-do list come December.

Instead of continuing to recycle last January's file, here are suggestions on how to make fool-proof new year's resolutions:

Be reasonable.
Let's be real here: change rarely happens overnight, especially if it takes the giant form of a high-paying job when you sent in your resume to five different companies just ten minutes ago. Start small: you don't need too many resolutions at the same time nor big ones made with wide eyes. Consider the stage of life you're in and the factors in your current environment. Make your goals as realistic and as reachable as possible.

Be direct.
"Eat healthy," "exercise," and "save money"--while these three are admirable resolutions and the most common year in and year out, they too are poorly defined and should be avoided. Setting specific goals makes them measurable and thus attainable. How can you save more money? Perhaps keep a certain amount per week and pledge not to touch it until the end of the year. How can you maintain a fit and healthy lifestyle which includes an activity as dreadful as exercise? Maybe you can start with clocking in on the treadmill at least twice or thrice a week on the first quarter then begin the weights training on the months after that. The solution is found in the right plan with the quantifiable steps.

Be hopeful.
While exciting, the year ahead with our list of resolutions may too feel discouraging. Don't be disheartened. Figure out your motivations under each item; be very clear with your whys and you'll soon find that you will be up for the challenge of achieving this year's dreams. While you are advised to set realistic expectations, still aim high and dream big. You know your limits but you also know your strengths. Push yourself to keep growing and improving, then greatness becomes you.