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A therapist’s advice for your New Year’s resolution

Today’s tip: Instead of a resolution, make a principle.

You may have heard the stat: Every year, research has estimated, 80% of New Year’s resolution-makers ditch their goals before reaching the finish line; the remaining 20% may or may not find satisfaction from their achievements. The error isn’t in setting goals, but the spirit in which those goals are made. A better alternative to New Year’s resolution-making is to set New Year’s principles.

As the writer and therapist Kathleen Smith explains, “Principles are your beliefs about what your best self looks like. They describe who you want to be in challenging situations and difficult relationships.” When you know who you want to be, your actions will reflect the shift.

📚 More from Forge on building better habits:

A Habit Is Who You Are, Not What You Do
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The Question That Makes a Habit Stick
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A Simple Equation to Start or Break Any Habit
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