Here’s a successful tip for sticking to those New Year’s resolutions:

Tell as many people as possible about your resolutions.

That’s it.

When we tell someone what we want to do, we are making a social contract or agreement.  We like being socially consistent – we like doing what we say we are going to do.  It sends the message to others that we are dependable, trustworthy people.  

According to Cialdini (2008), one of the pillars of influence is commitment and consistency.   When you tell someone your New Year’s resolutions, you are in essence telling them (and yourself), “I am a consistent and committed person.  I will fulfill what I say I will fulfill.  You will see me as a trustworthy person.”

So go ahead and tell as many people as possible about your resolutions.  The more detail you get into, the more likely you will stick with the resolutions.  Here are some ideas of people with whom you might want to share your resolutions.  Keep in mind you want to select people that are trustworthy and will respect that you may not want information about your resolutions passed along to other people:

  • Family members
  • Friends
  • Coworkers
  • Clergy
  • Internet support group
  • 12-step group
  • Posting it on a blog
  • Positing it on social media (granted you interact with others frequently)

Good luck on those resolutions!

Cialdini, R. (2008).  Influence: Science and practice (5th ed.).  New York: Harper Business.