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Posted at 4:40 AM, Jan 13, 2023
and last updated 2023-02-15 16:01:36-05

Thousands of people make goals called "resolutions" to begin a new year.
Sticking to resolutions is difficult, but not impossible.

“People are far more successful at New Year’s resolutions than anyone would predict,” said John C. Norcross, the author of acclaimed self-help book “Changelogy.”

Norcross said 40 percent of New Year’s resolvers succeed.

“This is huge,” he said. “This is the biggest single opportunity to improve your life on the year. I certainly understand people dismiss it.”

But making improvements through New Year’s resolutions takes work, he said. In “Changeology”, Norcross writes about five stages for successful change.

The steps include:

  • Psych: Knowing where you want to do
  • Prep: Setting actual goals
  • Perspire: Modifying behavior and environment
  • Persevere: Manage slips by forgiving yourself but moving on quickly
  • Persist: Maintain the change with the help of constant adjustment and attention

Norcross said willpower alone more often than not will not satiate a resolution.

“Willpower is a powerful too, but people who rely on it too much fail at a higher rate,” he said.

For the change to truly take hold, Norcross said people need to follow through for 90 days.