Every year, millions of people ring old the old year and bring in the new by making New Year’s resolutions. They set goals such as vowing to lose weight, to exercise more, to drink less or to quit smoking.

But the vast majority of people – up to three-quarters of them – will see their vows fall by the wayside, sometimes within days. For such people, we offer a few tips to help them carry through on their resolutions for 2019:

Have realistic goals. Many people fail because they set the bar far too high to begin with.

Think about what you really want to do to improve your life in the days before New Year’s, and then draw up a plan for how you want to proceed and all the benefits of your resolution.

Don’t keep your resolution to yourself; let others know, so they can be there to help you get started and to keep you going when you hit the rough patches.

Take your resolution one step at a time – you can’t lose twenty pounds without losing five pounds first.

Track your progress, and allow yourself occasional rewards for reaching a stage of your goal.

If you screw up – for instance sneak one cigarette here, or have a big slice of pie there – don’t sweat it, you can keep moving forward. There are no Resolution Police who are going to toss you in jail for the occasional slip.

As your resolution becomes a habit, you’ll find it’s easier and easier to keep as time passes.

If at first you don’t succeed, then try, try again. It doesn’t have to be New Year’s for you to make a resolution.

Happy New Year to all our readers from the Penobscot Times. May 2019 be a wonderful year for each and every one of you. And for those of you who make a resolution, may you succeed beyond your wildest dreams.

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