New Year’s Resolutions

It’s December 31 . . . do you know what that means? For many, it’s time to celebrate the beginning of a new year. That’s right: It’s New Year’s Eve!

A big part of ringing in a new year is making some resolutions: goals you’d like to accomplish in the coming year.

While people may have all sorts of unique goals at the start of a new year, there are some common themes. They include health and fitness, money, career, love, travel, and hobbies/skills. 

Let’s discuss how to make and talk about a good New Year’s resolution!

How to make New Year’s resolutions the SMART way

As we mentioned, a resolution is a type of goal. And, like any goal, it has to make sense for you—otherwise, you probably won’t be successful. 

The best way to ensure it’s a good resolution is to make it SMART. Your goal should be: 

  • Specific: Make sure to include details—it shouldn’t be too general.
  • Measurable: You should be able to check to make sure you’re making progress.
  • Attainable: Make a goal that you can actually do; it must be realistic. 
  • Relevant: It should make sense for you, in your situation.
  • Time-bound: It needs to have a deadline so you stay focused and on track.

SMART resolution example

Imagine that you want to get in shape (get healthier). Here’s a resolution that’s not very SMART: 

I want to get in shape.

What’s wrong with this resolution?

Well, it has a few problems: 

  • It’s not specific: What does “get in shape” mean to you?
  • It isn’t measurable: How will you know if you’re on track and when you’ve reached your goal?
  • It isn’t time-bound: It doesn’t include a deadline—you may never get to the finish line if you give yourself all the time in the world!

A SMART resolution would be something like this:

I want to be able to jog for 30 continuous minutes by June of this year. I will try to increase my time by five minutes every month.

As you can see, this resolution is much more specific (increase jogging time to 30 minutes), measurable (increase time by five minutes per month), and time-bound (by June). 

How to talk about your resolutions 

Now that you know how to make a good resolution, here’s some language you can use when you’re talking about them:

I want to . . . 

Next month, I want to start studying for two hours every evening.

I will . . . 

By the end of 2022, I will have cut down to only one alcoholic drink per week.

I’m going to . . .

I’m going to try to work out three times per week starting in January.

I hope to . . .

I hope to increase my English level from intermediate to upper-intermediate before 2023.

I’d like to . . .

I’d like to meet at least one new friend who shares my interest in sci-fi movies by the end of the year.

I resolve to . . .

I resolve to quit my job by September and find a position as a project manager in a software design company.

How about you?

Do you have any New Year’s resolutions? Whatever your goals are for the coming year, just make sure they’re SMART, and you’ll be on track to accomplishing the things you want to do this year!

And if your resolution is to improve your English, Gabby Academy is here for you. Our native-level coaches can help you meet your English language goals for 2022!

Happy New Year!

Andrea is a Gabby Academy coach and education technolgy writer based in Vancouver, Canada.