Language in Bloom

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On New Year’s Resolutions

It’s that time of year again!

Just when you get the hang of writing “2014” on your checks (or wherever), December draws to a close. And in the spirit of the coming new year, let’s talk about New Year’s Resolutions.

According to a study at the University of Scranton, of US Americans that make resolutions, only 8% succeed frequently. That doesn’t seem like a lot, does it? Then you have a huge chunk of resolution-makers who “succeed infrequently” (49%). And then you have almost a quarter of folks who “never succeed”. Ouch.

 NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTION SUCCESS RATES (OF US AMERICANS WHO MAKE RESOLUTIONS)

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The prospects look bleak, don’t they? So you might start to wonder, “Why make New Year’s Resolutions at all, if they’re bound to fail?”

The answer, according to that very same study, is that

People who explicitly make resolutions are 10 times more likely to attain their goals than people who don’t explicitly make resolutions.

(Emphasis mine)

 That’s why, in order to succeed in making 2015 the year you learn a language, the very first step is to

Make an explicit resolution

Then you need to tell someone about it; it doesn’t need to be someone you know personally, although I like to share my goals with people that know me in real life because it adds another level of accountability. But just share your goal with anyone, be it a family member, personal friend, acquaintance in an online community, etc. The point is to share your goals with someone who will hold you accountable to sticking with it.

There they are, the very first two steps that are the most crucial to sticking with your 2015 resolution to learn a new language. That wasn’t so hard, was it?

What resolutions do you have for 2015?

Written by

Tammy Bjelland
Language lover, teacher & coach.

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