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Every January, you think about New Year's Resolutions. Even if you aren't in the habit of making them, you still probably think about them. It's hard not to. It's a new year, and you can't help but realize how fast the years are flying by. Even if you don't write them down, it's a time for reflecting about how you want to make the most of your life, and the changes you would like to make.

The problem for most people is that you think about things you want to do differently. Or you write down some vague ideas about doing things "better", but you don't actually make resolutions that can stick. This is because they are too vague, too general, and not actionable things you can do to make changes. Changes need to be made slowly, step by step, to be incorporated long-term into our lives.

So instead of creating resolutions you won't follow, here are 20 ideas for promises you should make to yourself that are action-oriented, incremental changes you can sustain over time. Set yourself up for success this year.