How to resuscitate your New Year's resolutions

Ah, remember when the year was fresh and new, and we were pumped full of resolve to become the ideal versions of ourselves? We were going to exercise 90 hours a week, cure cancer, and cook like Julia Child. And then we realized we were being utterly unrealistic. But look, just cause it's a random Tuesday in February doesn't make today any less fitting for a fresh start. In fact, that might as well be our first tip: this moment is the perfect time to start over.

  • Rekindle your motivation. The reason you made these resolutions in the first place is because there was something you wanted to achieve, and at the start of the year you had the fire in your belly to make it happen. But now it's cold outside, you haven't made any progress, and the couch is singing its siren song. Been there. You just need to get back in touch with that fire in your belly. Look at magazines, blogs, and books that fill you with inspiration. Visualize yourself achieving your goal. Read some encouraging quotes. Feel that motivation start to percolate and when it does, let it move you to take one small step forward.
  • Think small. That goal to run a marathon? Without a game plan to break it down into manageable parts you might as well be digging a hole to China without a map or a shovel. It might not be as exciting as making some big, radical change, but sticking with small, achievable goals is what will get you on the track to that big accomplishment. If running was your resolution, check out the Couch-to-5K program for a way to get started or if you want to start eating healthier, check out these 7 feel-good foods.
  • Put it in black and white. To write the great American novel, you're going to need some time to, well, write. In your daily planner, schedule a time to work on your goal that you'll honor as if it were a doctor's appointment. It can be 15 minutes, but set aside any amount of time on a daily or weekly basis to devote to your resolution. Make your resolution part of your daily routine.
  • Get support. And get it from as many places as possible. Don't expect your partner to naturally become your live-in cheerleader (especially if your goal is causing a change for both of you). Tell them exactly what you need -- "Please help me try to keep healthy foods in the house," or "When I start to falter, please remind me why I want to do this." Also remember to turn to friends and online forums for the rah-rah boost that you need. Most importantly, be your own best support system. When you find yourself thinking, "This is just way too hard," put a positive spin things. "This is really difficult, but I'm doing this to prove to myself just what I'm capable of." You might even surprise yourself.
How do you guys keep yourselves motivated? And -- dare I ask? -- how are those New Year's resolutions going?

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