They say everything you do for 21 days straight becomes a habit, but what happens if you drop it after a few months? Not much. It simply means, that habit or resolution wasn’t for you. Most psychologists and even nutritionists recommend to do things gradually so that a) they stick and b) they are more of a transition, rather than a sudden commitment to something you can’t actually achieve. In this case I’m talking about which new year’s resolutions you shouldn't really promise for next year. This way you might be able to evade that failure feeling when you do your auto-review at the end of next year:
Eliminate a Food Group: Unless you have a serious alergy or intolerance, you’re most likely trying to quit something you really like; it might be gluten, dairy, or red meat; and those are all great ideas... if you think you can sustain that. But let's be real, next time you go out drinking you’ll be inhaling a gluten filled pizza covered in glorious cheese. SO the lesson here is: drastic measures don’t really work. I guess the more sane advice would be to try eating less of something and substituting for healthier options, but maybe not all the time.
Break Up: Do you really need January 1 to come for you to grow a pair and end the relationship you’re in? No. Think about it this way “there will always be a reason not to.” If you’ve been involved with this person for a while, you’ve obviously made plans and will continue to do so! Sure, I get it, it’s Christmas, you can’t do that to him on his favorite time of the year; but you can’t do it on the first day of the year either; or on his great-aunt’s 100th birthday or on the day you were going to see that show he loves... So, as Nike would put it, just do it. Do it now.
Find Love: Hmmm, how do I put this? I’m a firm believer in happy endings and no matter how bad it's been, people should believe in love until their very last day… BUT maybe the wording is just off on this one. If you’re longing to find your one true love, I suggest you make your resolution more along the lines of: “do something I’ve never done before to meet new people,” or, “break patterns and look for people I'd normally never go out with." Remember, the more specific the better, and most importantly for this one, open up!
Join a Gym: This might be a good start, but let me tell you it will not change your exercising habits just like that. You can very well drop it by March and make up excuses aaall year round. It’s better to find a class you pay for each time, and once you know you can commit, you can sign up for a gym membership; but I wouldn't recommend it before.
Quit Smoking: Don’t get me wrong, this is probably the best idea you’ve ever had, but you can’t really assign a date to drop a habit like this. You have to be absolutely convinced you want to leave it, and that can come at any time of the year! Attempting to do things just because it’s new years won’t usually last. There are so many bigger reasons to quit cigs; find one and do it!
Reaching A Goal Weight: Fact is our bodies change, and while we all want to go back to our 100-lb teen selves, these goals can be unrealistic and just end up in frustration. Don't compare yourself to your favorite celebrity or your 16-year-old persona. It's better to pick a pair of jeans you love and look good in, and get yourself to fit in them again. No, not those Abercrombie jeans from 2002.
Give That Friendhsip A Fresh Start: Ummm, ok, let me put it to you this way; there's this friend you've been falling apart with for years now, who doesn't reciprocate, treat you well or support you, but you're willing to turn the page and start fresh just because you've known each other for decades? No. Not good for you. Not realistic. Just no.
Become More Spiritual: Again, this doesn't come overnight, and it has to make sense with who you are. Wanting to find the time for spirituality is always a great thing, but you can't become religious or start believeing in things you've never believed in your whole life all of a sudden. I'd say getting to know yourself better would be a great first step to achieve this one, but it might take more than a year, so don't rush it.