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How I make Language New Years Resolutions (and keep them)

The funny part is: I have never made resolutions for New Years until this year, I usually make them later in the year. However, I have found that, unlike most people who give up on their resolutions fairly quickly, I am good at keeping mine.

Here is what works for me (these can be applied to other new years resolutions as well):

1) I start small and build onto that. For example, one of my resolutions this year is to start working towards being able to take the DALF C1 exam for French which is a pretty big goal but I have made little goals that will build on top of each other through the year to help me attain that goal. This is one of the biggest problems for many people as they set these big goals where they try to start doing too much too soon and in the process stress themselves out and they burn out.

2) I make it a habit to work on it a little every day. Habits can be hard to set in place but there are some things that will help you achieve this: (1) Do one habit at a time, don't try to do more than that as it won't work. (2) Attach the habit you choose to something else you do everyday. For example if you want to put yourself in the habit of going for a 15 run every morning you could attach it to eating breakfast. After you finish breakfast you go for your run. (3) Don't think about the action of actually running for 15 minutes, think about instead putting your shoes on and going outside.

3) Utilize your time to it's fullest. A lot of the time this is another reason people give up, they say they don't have enough time to do anything. But think about this for a second: How much time do you spend in a car? Or on public transportation everyday? How much time do you waste on the internet? Utilize that time to the fullest. I now go for a walk everyday listening to a French podcast to practice my French and much of the time I spend in a car I listen to a French podcast.

4) Note also that you can attach more than one thing that functions as one habit. For example, I go for a walk and also listen to the French podcast but for me those are one in the same. Sometimes this is a bit harder to do for language habits but you can get creative. Another possibility is if you want to make it a habit to read a minimum of 5 pages a day, read books in the language you are learning (they don't have to be novels, they can be anything- even kid's books).

I hope these tips help you keep your New Years resolutions in place! Good luck!

January 7, 2018



Everything you said is agreeable. I actually despised making resolutions, until this year, of course. I have definitely implemented these things when it comes to my French goals. Since I want to write French literature, I try to start small and build on as I progress. For instance, I want to memorize more vocabulary. Lingvist and clozemaster are good sites for learning French vocabulary, so I make it a habit everyday to learn there. Then, I have continued by writing simple French stories that don't require complex diction or fancy writing styles. Also, I try to read simple French stories to get a greater understanding of how certain phrases are worded. Poetry is a bit more difficult since it involves a prose-like style, however, I'm slowly gaining a grasp on writing French poetry. Then, I plan on writing longer stories that are more complex, though I am not at that point yet.

In the beginning, I was overwhelmed by my goals, but instead of trying to devour the whole picture (my future of writing French literature), I just break it down and accept any progress I make. So, in all, I really do like your advice. ^ ^

Anyways, thank you for sharing how you keep resolutions!


I never really despised New Years resolutions, I just never did them. It's probably because my brother's birthday is New Years eve so we were always distracted by that but now he's older and celebrates with his wife. So now we aren't all distracted by that.

For poetry you could try doing tanka poems they are like an elongated version of haikus. A tanka has a 5-7-5-7-7 syllables for each line, I have done a few of these myself in French and they're pretty fun ^^ I don't try to make them rhyme, I just have fun trying to fit the syllable count.

I wish you luck! That is an awesome goal and I think you are doing great! I am glad you found my tips useful.


That was pretty informative, thank you!


You are welcome!


Wow, these tips are pretty smart and I thank you for it. If you have read my earlier post, https://www.duolingo.com/comment/25757104 , you'll see that I have a lot of goals and I am not very good at keeping them. Thanks for the tips! I hope you fulfill yours! Here's a lingot for your new year ;)


Thank you for the lingot and good luck keeping your resolutions going! ^^

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