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New Year's Resolutions: The Top Ten Reasons They Fail.

Updated on December 29, 2018
Leaping into our future
Leaping into our future | Source

It is that time again, and so many of us will be making and breaking resolutions before the month is out. Of course many will make and stick to resolutions far into the year; but the harsh reality is that the majority of us will probably fail... and here's why.


The Top Ten reason Why:

Goals or Expectations Too High

We didn't pack on the extra weight or begin smoking like chimneys overnight ; so it is going to take more than a resolution in January to change. Rome wasn't built in a day, and for me neither was my waistline.

Many Simply Fail To Plan

As the old saying goes ..."failing to plan, is planning to fail." We have to plan out ways and techniques in which our resolutions will be met. What will we do, or attempt to do differently.We simply must have a plan.

Not Setting Target Dates

Since we know we aren't going to get all our resolutions met in a day; target dates for small accomplishments are vital. Say to yourself that you will have so much done by a certain target date.Stay realistic!

Comparing Progress to Others

Remember that everyone is different , with individual needs, desires, and circumstances. Progress in terms of resolutions is an individual thing. Quite often we make resolution pacts with others, and are disappointed if are fellows are doing better than we. So be it... don't get discouraged; cheer them on, and keep going!

Telling The Wrong People

Remember that everyone is not an encouraging voice of reason, and a friend. Resolutions are personal and important to many of us. Something so intimate should not be shared with everyone you encounter and mere casual acquaintances.

Not Being Grateful

Just as that nosey co-worker or discouraging acquaintance can be discouraging; we can sometimes be our own worse enemy. Don't belittle your own progress however small it may seem it is further than you were before you started toward the goal. If you are smoking 1 and 1/2 packs whereas you were smoking three packs a day, be grateful, and keep forging ahead.

Giving Up Too Soon

If you fail to stop smoking or eating chocolate after midnight, don't give up. Remember that Rome wasn't built in a day... but a whole lot of days strung together. There is no resolutions rulebook that says if you resolved to spend more time with friends or spend less money, or what have you; that you are a failure if you miss the mark. Resolve to do better and do. You don't have too wait another 365 days.

Forget To Reward Yourself

Both humans and animals alike perform all the better when a reward is looming. Don't forget to reward yourself. However if you resolved to eat healthier don't reward yourself with a gallon of ice cream.. be reasonable. Find rewards that don't lead to or pertain to the object or behaviour of resolve.

Too Many Resolutions At Once

Since ancient times cultures have been resolving to change at the coming of a New Year. Many societies sacrificed to their Gods at this time of year, and believed themselves cursed if their resolutions weren't kept. We too in our so-called modern society put a high premium on these annual promises. We put so much value on these promises that we make too many resolutions at once. It is reasonable to want to rebuild one's life or reinvent oneself; but as this author knows all too well it takes steps.

Make Them Only Once A Year

Again, I don't remember ever reading the official resolutions guide and rulebook. Who says that we can't resolve throughout the year or seasonably. Lets resolve to do so and so by spring, or fall. or at the beginning of winter. How about just resolving to be thankful and grateful for another day of breathing on this planet... and let's resolve to make it and the lives of our fellows better daily.


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    • Laurinzo Scott profile imageAUTHOR

      LJ Scott 

      8 years ago from Phoenix, Az.

      Thank you for your comments unknown... and God bless your New Year!

    • unknown spy profile image

      Life Under Construction 

      8 years ago from Neverland

      i agree with your reasons. when you want resolutions, you dont have to wait for new year to do it.start right now :) i must admit, they're also my reasons for resolution's failure.

    • Laurinzo Scott profile imageAUTHOR

      LJ Scott 

      8 years ago from Phoenix, Az.

      Thank you very much Sid for your comments, and yes I have read your great hub on this very subject and you have some very great points...

    • Laurinzo Scott profile imageAUTHOR

      LJ Scott 

      8 years ago from Phoenix, Az.

      Very great response Silent Reed , and that is a very high percentage of people . I very much agree that we should come up with more concrete approacehes that not only enhance ; but sometimes re-invent our lives!

      God bless you and thank you for the insightful comments

    • SidKemp profile image

      Sid Kemp 

      8 years ago from Boca Raton, Florida (near Miami and Palm Beach)

      SilentReed, you make an excellent point. Many people - either uninformed or unrealistic - think that a New Years resolution is words said at New Years, without a daily effort for the next 365 days. If a reader wants to try a different approach that avoids the ten mistakes noted here, my hub on New Years resolutions that work might help.

    • SilentReed profile image


      8 years ago from Philippines

      Statistics show that out of ten people who set out on New Year's resolutions, nine would give up within 3 to 6 weeks on average. Although resistance to changes is hard-wired into our human nature, another reason for giving up is lack of real motivation. Our New Year's resolutions have become a kind of wishing; hoping for the desired results sans the effort. Instead of a magic lamp, we should be looking for a map to guide us and start taking steps towards our destination.

    • Laurinzo Scott profile imageAUTHOR

      LJ Scott 

      8 years ago from Phoenix, Az.

      thank you for the link, and I will definitely read your hub; and that is remarkable a number !

      Thanks for the info and comments Sid

    • Laurinzo Scott profile imageAUTHOR

      LJ Scott 

      8 years ago from Phoenix, Az.

      Thank you so much Eiddwen, I very much appreciate you comments and thought.

    • Laurinzo Scott profile imageAUTHOR

      LJ Scott 

      8 years ago from Phoenix, Az.

      Yes it is genuinely all about His plan for our lives; and we pray that He guides us , and we know He will!

      And everyday resolve to know more of His way than mine...

    • SidKemp profile image

      Sid Kemp 

      8 years ago from Boca Raton, Florida (near Miami and Palm Beach)

      You're right on target. In fact, 88% of people fail to achieve their New Years resolutions. This is a great list of the reasons why, and I've just linked to it from my hub "New Years Resolutions That Work: Five Tips to Success." Folks who like this article might like that one, as well.

    • Eiddwen profile image


      8 years ago from Wales

      Very interesting indeed and left much food for thought.

      Voting up and sharing.


    • Faith Reaper profile image

      Faith Reaper 

      8 years ago from southern USA

      I am just going to see what God has planned for me. I am always surprised and excited about what is ahead and even the struggles help me to be the woman I am today. Of course I have some goals in mind, but I will let Him take the lead. His plans are always much better than any that I can come up with no doubt

      Voted up +++ sharing

      God bless. In His Love, Faith Reaper

    • Laurinzo Scott profile imageAUTHOR

      LJ Scott 

      8 years ago from Phoenix, Az.

      Thank you so much Deborah for you comments

      and I think I learned so much from you my friend

      God bless you!!!

    • Laurinzo Scott profile imageAUTHOR

      LJ Scott 

      8 years ago from Phoenix, Az.

      Thank you lovedoctor926 , and yes I found out the hard way too about not letting discouraging people know too much!

    • Laurinzo Scott profile imageAUTHOR

      LJ Scott 

      8 years ago from Phoenix, Az.

      Thank you Martin, and have a great one!!!!

    • Deborah Brooks profile image

      Deborah Brooks Langford 

      8 years ago from Brownsville,TX

      Laurinzo. I agree with you.. we cannot tell negative people.. some things you got to keep to yourself..

      another great hub and great advice

      oh and yes dont make so many you just cant keep them and you get frustrated..

      We must never give up though and keep going .....taking care of ourselves..

      that is the truth.. I think a friend told me that.

      many blessings my friend



    • peachpurple profile image


      8 years ago from Home Sweet Home

      A great hub that hit the right spot in everyone heart, out of yr top 10 reasons, 9 of them were hit! voted awesome

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      You raised very good points here. Setting possible realistic goals and and if applicable a date to achieve them helps you accomplish that goal you have set. Telling the wrong people. I really have to learn to keep my mouth shut. Lol.

    • Mhatter99 profile image

      Martin Kloess 

      8 years ago from San Francisco

      Right you are. Thank you for this.

    • Laurinzo Scott profile imageAUTHOR

      LJ Scott 

      8 years ago from Phoenix, Az.

      Thank you so much teaches12345... I try and do the same...emphasis on REASONABLE ones lol

    • Laurinzo Scott profile imageAUTHOR

      LJ Scott 

      8 years ago from Phoenix, Az.

      Lol... then start again...there is No rule that says you can't. Thanks for your comment LauraD

    • Laurinzo Scott profile imageAUTHOR

      LJ Scott 

      8 years ago from Phoenix, Az.

      lol... You are probably the only normal one among us all Bill

      and I like that goalsetting!!!!

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 

      8 years ago

      You have listed some reasons I failed to keep resolutions in the past. Now I just make reasonable goals and work towards them. Excellent post!

    • LauraD093 profile image

      Laura Tykarski 

      8 years ago from Pittsburgh PA

      Great hub-I gave up New Years resolutions about 10 years ago-it was far too frustrating breaking every one I ever made by midnight of January first!

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 

      8 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Well okay, now I can comment. You know how us writers love to comment.

      I don't do resolutions; I simply make goals and then meet them. However, I'm the first to admit that I am not normal, so anything I say on this subject might just be so much hogwash! LOL

      Good suggestions my friend.


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