New Year’s Resolutions Don’t Work, But Having Fun Does. Here’s How.

An article for frustrated goal seekers providing a counter-intuitive approach to dealing with failed resolutions. Available for review at

It is an open secret that most New Year’s resolutions ultimately fail. Science suggests that for every 10 New Year’s commitments made, only one will be left standing by the end of the year. If New Year’s resolutions don’t work, where does that leave us? We can resolve to make 2020 our Year of Fun. In a recent article titled “The Fun File and The Year of Fun,” fun expert Michael Rucker, Ph.D., outlines a simple three-part strategy empowering anyone to make 2020 full of fun.

Why a “Year of Fun?” In addition to fun being an effective defense against prominent societal ills like burnout, loneliness and boredom, fun is also an undervalued component in successfully achieving resolutions. For instance, one of the best tactics for eliminating a bad habit is to replace it with another activity that is more enjoyable. Yet all too often, we simply try to use our willpower, which sets us up for failure. Fun can also help us commit to our goals. For instance, someone looking to run more can prepay for a marathon located in a desirable exotic location. When we work toward achieving something we perceive as pleasurable, our tendency is to be more motivated. When we are motivated by fun toward a worthy pursuit, we increase our odds of a successful outcome.

“You hear a lot about happiness around the holidays as people formulate aspirations for the new year,” Dr. Rucker attests. “However, it’s ‘fun’ that is really the action behind how we subjectively feel. The ‘Fun File’ exercise is an easy way for anyone to create more wonder and delight in their life.”

To create a “Year of Fun,” Dr. Rucker suggests creating a comprehensive list of activities you find enjoyable and then identifying a shortlist of activities from this exercise that can be put into action throughout the year. These activities can either be routine or one-time events. The final step is to commit to them by scheduling them throughout the year. Further hints, tips and tricks to a successful “Year of Fun” can be found in the article: The Fun File and The Year of Fun

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