Ask the Experts

To gain a deeper understanding of everything that makes New Year’s so special (plus potential pitfalls to watch out for), we posed the following questions to a panel of experts specializing in psychology, sociology and public safety.

What tips and tricks do you have for people trying to make a new year’s resolution they can actually keep?

Stephanie D. Preston
A key to making a New Year's Resolution is to focus on something very specific and sustainable. No need to be heroic, unless that motivates you. Your plan must be detailed and concrete, and yet simple and tailored to your preferences and lifestyle. For example, most people cannot sustain a daily 5 am gym trip or a total ban on meat or carbs. However, it is probably realistic and better than your current status to walk with a committed friend three lunchtimes a week, skip meat for two meals a day, or leave in a few cherished carbs as a reward (e.g., a walk Saturday morning to the bakery or pizza with friends on Friday). Make sure to plan out exactly what will replace your habitual behavior -- something you like and would really do -- and build in rewards. People also benefit from social support. Telling your plan to others provides accountability, and friends who already mastered this change can offer key tips and tricks. Join a Facebook or Instagram group on your topic. There is something out there for everyone!

Read the full article at WalletHub.