Statistics show planning yields resolution results

Over the break, you might have made a New Year’s resolution. Unfortunately, there is only an 8 percent chance it will be a success.

About 45 percent of Americans make New Year’s resolutions, 17 percent sometimes make them, and 38 percent never make them, according to, an analytic website.

Fortunately for those who brave the 8 percent success rate, people who set resolutions are 10 times more likely to reach their goals than those who do not explicitly do so, said.

Sophomore Sierra Elston said she has never set a New Year’s resolution, but she would be more likely to after hearing this statistic.

“Waiting to complete your goal in a year is taking out important time,” she said. “I feel like if I need to make changes in my life, I do them right then instead of waiting for a set time.”

Specifically for individuals in their 20’s, the success rate for resolutions rises to 39 percent, the data reported. also showed 75 percent of individuals maintain their resolutions through the first week, while only 46 percent remain on track after six months.

According to the data, the top three resolutions for 2014 were losing weight, getting organized, and spending less or saving more. These were followed by enjoying life and staying fit.

Two of sophomore Jacob Phillips’ resolutions are to write down his thoughts and to spend more time reflecting on life.

“I thought of (these resolutions) after reading a book, having many interesting thoughts about it and not being able to remember those thoughts afterward,” he said. “I realized I didn’t spend enough time reflecting on the things I did or the things I read.”

He said willpower is all It takes to achieve a goal.

Finding a plan that works for the individual is important for any New Year’s resolution, especially if it is to lose weight, said Glenda Richey, UNA fitness coordinator.

“I can work out six times a week, but that might be crazy for others,” she said. “Some people want to work out and not watch what they eat. Some just want to count carbs and calories. Any effort is better than none.”

Setting a plan made achieving the New Year’s resolution of reading 100 books in a year possible, said freshman Maddie Palmer.

“I sat down and mapped out what I wanted to get done each month, and then if I got behind, I pushed even harder to catch up,” she said. “Pacing myself was definitely important. When you have a plan, it definitely helps.”

Setting realistic goals is also important, Richey said.

“If someone wants to lose weight, I would suggest starting with a goal of 10 pounds or less per month,” she said. “The same can go for any New Year’s resolution. Setting small goals can help you reach the bigger goal.”

Richey also said to beware of the “honeymoon period.”

“This is the time when you first begin your resolution and it is a success,” she said. “After that, you might start feeling like the resolution is no longer working. You have to stay positive even after that initial success.”

Having someone to be accountable to is also helpful, she said. If any student has a New Year’s Resolution to get in shape, she said she, as well as certified personal trainers at the SRC can be helpful. Personal training sessions are 5 for $20, and her nutrition appointments are free. She can be reached at [email protected]