Why Setting Resolutions Benefits More Than Just Yourself

Setting and keeping resolutions can feel complicated at times, but the objective is simple: Helping ourselves be better, do better, and feel better. Sally Hogshead, founder of How to Fascinate® said it best: “The goal is not to change who you are, but to become more of who you are at your best.” Resolutions – whether formed during New Year’s or in the middle of the year – help us target and tap into preeminent selves.

But, even when our New Year’s resolutions focus on personal improvement, we still have the chance to positively affect those around us. Below are a couple ways setting resolutions benefits more than just ourselves.

Setting resolutions sets a good example. Many people feel that it’s nearly impossible to keep resolutions. (See: The hundreds and hundreds of articles and honey-do lists that come out around the New Year.) That’s probably why almost 60 percent of Americans don’t even try. Setting and prioritizing your resolutions helps motivate and encourage those around you. You become a walking billboard for hard work and possibility. And that should feel good.

Whether it’s your kids, roommate, neighbor, or long-distance partner, whomever is watching and helping you keep your goals will also be looking to you for motivation. Sharing your resolutions not only boosts your chances of keeping them but also shows your friends and family that it’s possible to set intentions and achieve goals.

Setting resolutions creates and gives life to community. As we’ve discussed before, joining a community of like-minded people increases your chances of keeping your resolutions. This benefits you, sure, but it also helps others in that community. Just because someone else has committed to a life change and joined a group, club, or team doesn’t mean that they won’t face hardship along the way.

Sure, they may be steps ahead of your other friends and family, but, hey, they’re still human. Just as you’ll lean on them when you’re struggling, they’ll seek to lean on you to be strong, too. Working to complete a resolution means that you’ll interact, be vulnerable, and celebrate with others, who in turn will do the same with you. 

In the same way that setting resolutions helps us reach our best self, setting resolutions can also help us better the world around us. There are plenty of ways to make resolutions that help others while achieving personal goals. From clean eating to kicking a bad habit, here are some ways to transform your New Year’s resolutions so that you can help others while improving your life.

Resolution (Exercise Regularly): “I intend to run 2 miles every other day for 5 months.”

Exercising regularly not only helps your health, weight, and mood but also provides a simple way to give back to those in need. Download a few fitness apps that connect with charities, like Charity Miles, Charity Bets, Plus 3 Network, and Run4Good. These apps reward your movement by giving back to those in need, and in some, you can measure your success not only by miles run or pounds lost but also by the amount of money you’re raising. Consider it you own personal marathon.

Resolution (Get Organized): “I aim to clean out and organize one room of my house each Sunday.”

Cleaning isn’t the only tough part of de-cluttering and organizing a home; for some, figuring out what to do with all the stuff is just as difficult. Instead of simply throwing it away (which, after a long day of scrubbing, may be tempting), give your unwanted items to local homeless shelters, churches, and animal shelters. It’s a win-win for both you and your community.

Resolution (Save More): “I will set aside 25% of my bi-weekly income every Friday for one year.”

Saving money isn’t easy for some people, and many live with the check-to-check mentality. (Previously on our blog, we discussed a few smartphone apps that can help you budget your funds. Check ‘em out here.) A great tip when attempting to save is to delegate your funds so that every dollar has a “home”. Combine this with a philanthropic attitude, and you’ve got yourself a consistent donation fund. Donate that money to a charity of your choice, and we bet it’ll feel better than spending it on new clothes or another latte.

Resolution (Learn Something New): “I plan to practice Spanish every day for 60 days.”

Whether it’s finishing a book series, learning a new language, or joining a hobby group, making time for yourself is something that everyone deserves. Learning something new gives you the chance to challenge yourself, meet new people, and help others. If you’re learning a new language, joining a culture community or head down to the local refugee center to volunteer. If you’re learning to knit or crochet, donate some of your work to those in need. If you love reading, take your book skills to a few retirement homes and read to the elderly.

Resolution Club’s mantra is pretty straightforward: “Improve yourself. Improve the world.” Our simple, accountability-based software allows you to share your resolutions with and inspire others, join a booming community of like-minded people, and use those goals and intentions to help out others.

Truth is, setting resolutions isn’t just for yourself. Take the time to use your New Year’s resolution to benefit those around you. If we all work on bettering ourselves and helping others, our world can be better, too.