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Common Mistakes People Make With New Year’s Resolutions (And What To Do About Them)

Remember those resolutions you made a couple of weeks ago when the year ended? How are you doing with them now?

The reason I bring it up is because February is, unfortunately, where many New Year’s resolutions go to die.

Gear up! It’s not too late.

We all know that when it comes to achieving all those big dreams we aim for at the beginning of the year, it’s easy to start flagging around this time of the year once the hype dies down and real life sets in.

It’s not too late to get that fire re-lit and go for your goals, though – in fact, now might be an even better time to regroup and reevaluate. After all, when you reset these goals now, they aren’t just New Year’s resolutions anymore; they’re specific goals that you want to achieve!

Now that we’re about a month into it, now is a great time to take a look at your goals for 2021 and make any necessary tweaks.

Here are the most common mistakes we make when it comes to New Year’s resolutions, and how you can stop them from getting in the way of achieving your dreams. Any of these sound familiar to you?

1. Not Making Resolutions Measurable

The first mistake many of us make when we set our New Year’s resolutions is to not make them specific enough. 

It’s really easy to say that you want to get fit and healthy, but that doesn’t really cut it when it comes to making some big changes. Your goals need to be specific if you want to make them work … and if they’re not, you’re not going to be able to track your progress as well or build momentum, which means that you’re going to be way more likely to quit by Valentine’s Day.

If your resolutions are now long-forgotten because they weren’t specific enough before, take a second now to really map out what your general goals really mean for you. It might shine a light on the kinds of changes you need to make to put your goals into motion.

What I like to do is break my goals into smaller milestones; that way, when I reach a milestone (say, losing 5 lbs) I feel accomplished and motivated to continue toward the “big” goal.

2. Not Making Concrete Plans

Usually, self-improvement doesn’t just happen by hoping and wishing. The best things happen when you make action plans and put in the work to make them come true. According to The Goal Setting Theory, setting specific long-term goals will make you much more likely to actually achieve them, which makes perfect sense. You need to have some kind of concrete plan in place to give you a guide on how to actually get there.

If you haven’t already, take a minute to map out a specific game plan to make your resolutions a reality. And if you did it already at the beginning of the year, take a minute now to reevaluate it and see what progress you’ve made. No pressure if you haven’t made any at all yet – you can always tweak it for the future now.

3. Setting Too Many Goals at Once

We all want to be the best versions of ourselves, but it’s easy to lose track and get too overwhelmed to make any real progress if you made a ton of unrealistic promises to yourself at the beginning of the year. If your resolutions were to lose weight, read more, keep the house clean, save money, lift heavier weights … and you haven’t made any progress with any of the above yet, maybe it’s time to prioritize.

Instead: focus on just one goal at a time. You’ll be able to put all of your energy into it and accomplish it faster, rather than spreading yourself too thin, dragging all of them out, and getting discouraged.

4. Not Holding Yourself Accountable

The best way to “fail” at your resolutions is to not hold yourself accountable at all to reaching them. Accountability can come from outside, as well. Did you know that making a commitment to someone else to hold yourself accountable to your goals can make you 95% more likely to succeed?

These are great odds, so putting some kind of system in place is one of the best and most realistic ways that you’ll be able to get to your goal. Whether it’s as simple as enlisting a friend to check in on you or as drastic as giving yourself some ultimatums for not reaching your goal by a deadline, staying accountable is absolutely key to getting to where you want to be.

5. Not Setting Yourself Up For Success

Sometimes your “failures” when trying to achieve your New Year’s resolutions simply come from not giving yourself all the tools that you need to make them happen. For example, if you’re surrounding yourself with people that don’t support you or making impossible plans that are way too hard to follow, you’re actively making your own goals slip out of your grasp.

Take a minute to really assess what you need in order to achieve your New Year’s resolutions, and then commit to changing those circumstances. This is sometimes the hardest part, but it’s worth it if you want to make a difference and grow as a person.

6. Getting Discouraged Too Quickly

This is a big one, and it may be the reason that you quit your diet or stopped going to the gym a couple of weeks ago.

Any goal you make that requires a major lifestyle change isn’t going to show huge progress in the matter of a month or two, so you need to recommit to staying consistent for the long haul.

Instead of getting discouraged because you can’t see progress right away, make a mindset switch and realize that most change isn’t linear. Figure out a way to celebrate small victories and accomplishments along the way, and remind yourself that no good things happen immediately.


It’s not too late to buckle down and reassess your 2021 goals. Here’s your call-out to stick to your guns and keep taking those steps to accomplish the thing you promised you would at the beginning of the year!


Accountability, a Plan, and High Motivation: Start the Fit & Fight Ready Course to Make Epic Progress and Reach Your Goal!


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