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How to keep your New Year's resolutions


How to keep your New Year's resolutions © Thinkstock - How to keep your New Year's resolutions
How to keep your New Year's resolutions © Thinkstock

It's the same thing every year. We go through Christmas in a holiday cheer-induced daze, partaking in parties, buffets, midnight cake snacks. We indulge and exceed, all in the name of the Christmas spirit.

Then, Dec. 26 rolls around. Suddenly, Christmas songs aren't as cheery, twinkle lights are harsh and garish, and that midnight raid for turkey in the middle of the night seems like one too many. The pressure to make New Year's resolutions gets out of control.

Unfortunately, that is the worst mindset to make them in. The problem with New Year's resolutions is this: we always make the same ones, and we never keep them.

According to Dr. Rachel Toledano, director of the Montreal General Clinic of Psychology, the three most common New Year's resolutions are quitting smoking, going to the gym, and saving money. Those are also the fastest forgotten.

"What happens, is that people are all gung-ho the first few weeks, and then their old patterns resurface slowly but surely, and they say 'OK this one time, this one time,' and then that's it, they fall back into their addictive habits." Dr. Toledano says.

"To break a habit you need at least three months of real motivation without seeing any real big benefits. It takes three months at least to form a new habit. It's very long for someone who's going against their usual routine," she adds.

So how do we stick to these much needed healthy life choices? Dr. Toledano gave us some of her top tips.


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