Keep Your Resolutions on Track

Michelle Avola
Ex Director of NPC

According to a recent study*, about 41% of Americans make New Year’s Resolutions. After one week, approximately 75% are still successful. After one month, it drops to 64%, and after 6 months, just under half are still on track. That is actually better than I had guessed. However, people who have similar goals but do not set a resolution, only 4% are successful after 6 months!

Another number to keep in mind: it takes an average of 66 days to develop a new habit. Keep at it and it will become second nature.

The study also revealed that many of us make the same resolutions year after year. These are the most common:

  • Exercise more
  • Lose weight
  • Get organized
  • Learn a new skill or hobby
  • Live life to the fullest
  • Save more money/spend less money
  • Quit smoking
  • Spend more time with family and friends
  • Travel more
  • Read more

The statistics above make a good argument for setting a New Year’s Resolution, but January 1 is not the only day to embark on your journey to self-improvement.

If you slip up or lose your resolve altogether, you can still start again. You don’t need to wait until next January!

To make progress on your goals in 2023, checkout these tips: Write anything you want to accomplish for self-improvement purposes on a post-it and stick them to a wall. Use a whole pad if you need to. Group similar topics together, then rank each group by how strongly you feel about accomplishing them. Unless it ranks in the top two or three, save it for another time.

Determine what is motivating you. If your goals feel dictated or coerced by a manager, spouse, or family/peer pressure, you are far more likely to fail. Set a goal that is important to YOU and has value or benefit to YOU, then own it and work for it.

Let others have their own goals for themselves. Be reasonable. A common mistake in resolution setting is having too many and setting expectations that are too high. Sure, learning ten new skills, stopping five bad habits, and losing 60 pounds seems amazing, but it is not achievable for those of us who lack superpowers.

Have SMART goals: Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, Time-sensitive

After you have identified your goals, determined their importance/value to you, and prioritized them, it is time to write them down and keep them in a place that you see throughout the day.

Share your resolutions with others. If there is no one to encourage you and help you stay accountable, it is too easy to forget or ignore your goals. They don’t need to have the same goals, but if they are working toward a goal too, you can encourage and hold each other accountable, and celebrate your successes together along the way!

Take advantage of technology. Set daily appointment reminders on your phone’s calendar to exercise, study that new language, call your friend to check on progress, or whatever you are working onto help you stay on track. Put milestones you want to meet on your Calendar with a reminder a week in advance.

Expect setbacks and keep moving forward. Celebrate the Smaller victories as they come to keep motivating yourself. If getting more exercise is one of your top goals in 2023, I encourage you to start walking or biking with friends or family members. Being active with others is more enjoyable and keeps you accountable.

You can also train for a specific event to keep you motivated, and we have a really fun event coming up to put on your calendar! Naples Pathways Coalition is hosting the 17th Annual TD BankNaples Bike Brunch at Cambier Park.

After a light breakfast, you can take an 80, 62, 40, 20, 10, or 5 mile bike ride or a 2 mile walk, then come back to the park for a great after party with food, beer, music, raffles, and more.

For more information or to register, visit

Good luck with your resolutions. And remember, two steps forward and one step back is still one step forward. You can do this!


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