Be A Finisher: 3 Ways to Follow Through On Your New Year’s Resolution

You’ve probably seen a lot of New Year’s resolution posts litter Facebook and Instagram over the years that ultimately ended up in a social media graveyard of unfulfilled pledges.

Here are three strategies to help you finish what you start and be different than 90% of Americans who fail to follow through.

#1 Reality Check

Like many things in life, moderation is the key. If you start off by saying you want to lose 40 pounds and get a six pack, you’ll soon realize that that’s a pretty lofty goal and will take a considerable amount of time and dedication to accomplish if done safely.

Try this:  Start with a more realistic and less daunting goal of losing 5 pounds and walking around the block once a day at lunchtime. Try to eliminate 1 night of drinking alcohol or smoking cigarettes.   Try to get an additional 30 minutes of sleep per night and try to eliminate 30 minutes of screen time after dinner.   Instead of just throwing out a number and a “look” that you think you deserve, you’ll start laying the foundation for healthier lifestyle choices.  By making the smaller goals more attainable, you’ll start to gain momentum, consistency, and measurable results that can deliver a new lease on life.  And don’t forget to celebrate your successes along the way.  Instead of waiting until you lose the entire 40 pounds, make a big deal about accomplishing each and every 5 pound milestone.  The positive mojo and energy will really help you continue to fuel your efforts.

#2 Accountability Partners

The sooner you acknowledge the validity of the notion that “You are who you surround yourself with”, the sooner you’ll realize how important it is to make your solo adventure a team effort.  This doesn’t mean that the chosen few you accept into your inner-circle will do the hard work for you or simply tell you the things that you want to hear vs. need to hear when times get tough, but it does mean that you’ll have system in place forcing you to check in with your trusted friends/mentors/advisors/coaches on a bi-weekly, weekly, or monthly basis to report your progress (or lack thereof) and keep you honest.

Try this:

Social media has made finding prospective accountability partners fairly simple.  Look for results and consistency as opposed to a bunch of drama-related posts.  If you see someone posting a few pics online 2 years after they started their journey toward better self-care and they are still fit or improving their overall wellness status, they should be on your short list of people to reach out to.   They have probably experienced the same pitfalls and inevitable bumps in the road that are headed your way. This knowledge and camaraderie of empathy will be a difference-maker in the long term after the initial excitement of trying something new wears off.   Keep in mind, the people who simply “liked” your original posts will eventually stop cheering you on because they are on to the next cause or attention-grabbing media hype of the day.

#3 Forget the Calendar

There was a great song by Sade back in the day where she mentioned that “Every day is Christmas and Every night is New Year’s Eve”.   The underlying sentiment being, you don’t have to wait for a special holiday to treat yourself, to do something awesome, or to make someone else feel special.  Don’t fall into the trap that you have to wait until January 1st every year to start improving your lifestyle habits.

It’s  similar to the psychological quicksand that many Americans get caught in when they say something like, I’ll just wait until (insert holiday or personal milestone) comes to start getting serious about making these changes.  

Try this:

Realize that when it comes to your health and happiness, the best time to start any type of intervention is- today.  As in, now!   You could be reading this in the middle of summer or winter and it won’t matter. Resolutions of any kind or branding can only be attained if you take the first step.   Once you begin your journey, the key to seeing your resolutions through is focusing on the process vs. the goal.   Just ask my friend, Randy Bartlett.

If you want to be a “finisher,” you’ll soon realize that the 10% of Americans who actually accomplish their goals  AND maintain consistent positive momentum, are the ones who already came to the realization that the continued implementation of  healthy lifestyle habits have evolved into an everyday lifestyle choice.  New Year’s Day is just another day on the calendar.




Marcello Pedalino, CFT, is the author of the new inspirational book on personal growth and development, Celebrate Life. He is an award-winning entrepreneur, lifestyle expert, and fitness trainer. He delivers dynamic keynote presentations to corporations and organizations across the country who need help making Energy Management and Work-Life balance a priority.  

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