Starting off the year with the right resolution—or not

At the start of a new year the slate is wiped clean, so it is the perfect time to make a change to your lifestyle whether it is big or small. Creating a New Year’s resolution can be a great way to work on those goals that you started thinking about a long time ago, but never actually got around to.

However, while many people may start off the New Year going to the gym every day or studying harder for that one class, it is rather common that people give up on their goals after only a few weeks. In fact, only about eight percent of people who make resolutions actually achieve them, and for this reason, many people find New Year’s resolutions unnecessary.

“I feel like [New Year’s resolutions] are useless because I forget about them after January…or the first day,” junior Kailee Akers said.

Akers is not the only student who does not see the reason behind making a New Year’s resolution. In a poll of Northwest students, about 70 percent did not have one.
But for those who are aiming high for 2014, who says you can’t fight the odds and be part of the eight percent of people who achieve their resolutions? Studies have shown that people who make New Year’s resolutions are ten times more likely to make significant changes in their lives.

Here are some of the top New Year’s resolutions for Northwest High School students, along with some suggestions for maintaining and achieving your goals:

Improve academically
Try making a study schedule or using a planner. This can be a huge help, especially if you are a notorious procrastinator. Or, instead of spending an hour on social media or texting your friends every night, make it half an hour and spend the extra time studying.

Lose weight
Not only is this one of the top resolutions at Northwest, but it is the top resolution in the nation. This being the case, gyms are often crowded at the start of the year and it can be frustrating to wait in a 30-minute line for the elliptical every day. Instead, try going on a jog or a bike ride. And although it might sound crazy, those diets which cut out all but one food group do not work. The best thing you can do is take a look at your current diet and eat less of the unhealthiest foods and more nutrient-rich food items.

Be a better person
Whether you are simply trying to treat others better or you are searching to be a better role model, a great way to start is by having a better attitude toward other people. Try to look at things from their perspective and think about what you are going to do or say before you act. You could also try giving your friends compliments instead of teasing them; it’s nice to be nice!

Improve in athletics
No person can become an incredible athlete overnight, it takes time and dedication. Make a weekly plan for how often you want to practice if you’re not already on a sports team. Don’t get frustrated; if you keep trying you will improve at whatever sport you choose, and remember not to overwork yourself.

No matter what your New Year’s resolution is, remember that it may not be easy to change your habits at first. Do not give up if you’re trying to lose weight and you slip up every now and then and have a dessert. No one is perfect and making a significant change to your lifestyle is difficult, so keep fighting to be in that eight percent.