New Year’s Resolutions: Are you going to be able to keep yours this year?

We all know New Year’s resolutions are easy to make, but sometimes they are even easier to break. How can you make this year better than last year? If you’re like me, you probably are excited to see what 2014 has to bring.  I’m ready for a slower paced year. In the last eighteen months, I got engaged, married, had a baby, AND bought a house. So, I’m ready to tackle anything 2014 throws my way!

So, you’ve made up your list or thought of one thing that you want to accomplish this year. We would love to hear what is on our Facebook or share it with us on Twitter, and we can encourage you along the way. We love hearing from our fans and clients on social media.  It can be something simple, like being more courteous (saying more “please” and “thank you” and not be so demanding) or it can be something a little more challenging like losing weight or quitting smoking.  In this blog, I will talk about websites and applications on your mobile device that can keep you on track with your goals to make this next year the best yet.

Now how do you keep those goals you have in place? The first thing to do is come up with a plan that has realistic, small goals that you can check off. As the saying goes, “if you fail to plan, you are planning to fail!”. Also, write down your goals and keep it handy like on your bathroom mirror or on the fridge. Better yet, why not try to use a digital medium.  If you have an app that’s your phone, you may be more likely to check things off and reach your goal. Let’s talk about how we can track our goals and our progress.

According to an article on www.thenextweb.com, they list 20 applications that help you stick with your New Year’s resolutions. In this blog post, I will highlight a few that are easy to use.  The first app listed is 21Habit.  You can choose between the free mode or committed mode.  The free mode doesn’t require any monetary obligations while the committed mode makes you save $21 in your habit.  For every day you’re successful, you get a dollar back. But, if you fail, a dollar is donated to charity.  If you want to share your goals and get support from friends and family, you might want to try 43 Things.  This application allows you to share your goals on social network sites. You can invite a friend to join in on a goal to get added support. Let’s say that you want to be a little stronger in your commitment towards a goal. Check out the app StikK. This one allows you to create a ‘committment contract’ for your goal.  There are a couple of steps when it comes to setting this up. First set a goal followed by making a stake to act as an incentive. You can pick a referree to judge if you’ve stuck to your contract. Stakes and referees are optional.

Let’s explore some websites that you can check out if you all you have is a computer at hand.  First of all, all of these sites are free to use. Pretty nice, right? There’s nothing more that I can’t stand than having to pay to use a site or sign up for a membership to the site.  To me, that means spam e-mails and unwanted solicitation. So, first there is Start a Resolution.  I found this site pretty neat because a complete stranger helps you stay on track with your goals.  It’s actually the previous user on the site! You enter your goal in a circle on the site along with your e-mail address, and a coach is assigned to you.  After you reach your goal you become the coach for the next person.  You can send them encouraging messages to help them keep their resolutions.

Another website that can help you stay focused is HabitForge. I found this site interesting because there are 1.2 million successful days logged by users.  According to those at HabitForge, it takes 21 days to form a habit.  The site allows you this many days to form a new habit.  You’ll get e-mails asking if you’ve reached your goal for that day.  You can have any type of goal – quitting smoking, losing weight, becoming more social…the possibilities are endless.

In the digital world we live in nowadays, there are so many ways to develop a plan of action and keep your resolutions all year long.  There is a wide variety of applications and websites waiting for you to put in your goals and there are people, albeit strangers sometimes, that can provide you with support. Happy Holidays!

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