Tuesday, December 30, 2014

10 Websites To Help You Stick To Your 2015 Resolutions

By Kayla Matthews
I’ve never been very good at making New Year’s resolutions. I either choose goals that aren’t actually attainable or realistic, or I simply don’t take my resolutions seriously enough and give up on them a few weeks into the year. But in 2015, I want to set some really good goals for myself, and actually see them through for once.
If you’re like me and need a little help sticking to your New Year’s resolutions, these ten websites will help you accomplish your goals for 2015:

Weight Loss And Health Resolutions

health resolutions
When most people think of a New Year’s resolution, they think of health and fitness goals. Consider the following three websites that will help you reach – and maybe even exceed – your health goals for 2015.

traineo

Traineo-site
traineo is a free weight loss management system that offers users exercises and useful visual diet tracking tools.
If you want to be healthier and shed a few pounds, you can use traineo to select up to four “motivators” who will help you stay on track with your health resolutions. These people will receive email updates about how much you’ve progressed toward your goals, thereby making you more accountable for seeing your resolutions through to the end.
Additionally, you can use traineo’s weight calculator to estimate and graph your current weight, how many calories you should consume, and your estimated future weight. This is great for keeping you motivated during times when your fitness plan might have otherwise failed, since you can see how your weight is expected to decrease in the future.
(If you want to get a jump start on your health goals, see what these fitness expertssuggest.)

MyFitnessPal

myfitnesspal site
A great calorie counter with lots of info on nutrition, MyFitnessPal is a simple way to manage your nutritional and caloric intake. As you can see from an earlier review of the weight loss app for iOS, the system simplifies the process of counting calories and offers users a straightforward interface.
If the hardest part of your New Year’s resolution is tracking how many calories you’re eating, this site can help you monitor those calories by providing fast and simple food tracking tools that you can access from your computer, smartphone or tablet. The site will also remember the foods that you eat most often, so the more you use MFP, the easier it becomes to track your calories.
In addition to the site itself, the team at MFP has also taken the time to list some awesome health and fitness apps that you can download and sync to your MyFitnessPal account to better track your exercise and health progress.
And, as if all that weren’t enough, the MFP blog, “Hello Healthy,” provides tons of delicious recipes and meal ideas to keep you away from your guilty pleasure foods.
To use MyFitnessPal from your smartphone, download the iPhone, iPad or Android app.

LogYourRun

logyourrun site
LogYourRun is a great tool for managing your time spent on exercise each week. Not only can you log how much you run, you can also log how much you bike, strength train, swim, walk, and more.
For any New Year’s resolution with a focus on health and exercising, this site can help you track your progress and stay motivated to keep going. As you rack up more logged exercises through the site, you can create graphs and charts that let you view the frequency and duration of your exercise times.
LogYourRun also lets you see recent routes people around the world have run, biked, walked, etc. so you can find and use the same paths, or share your own. The site also suggests training regimens for beginning runners and people who want to run their first 1/2 marathon, along with others training programs.
If you want to use LogYourRun on the go, the site also provides an app for iOS ($1.99).

Financial Resolutions

financial resolutions
Saving more and spending less are also classic New Year’s resolutions. Many people struggle with money management, but many also don’t have additional tools (like these apps to save money) for tracking and maintaining control over their spending. The following two websites will help you better manage your funds in 2015.

Mint

Mint site
If you want to keep your account balances automatically up to date, consider using Mint. You can manage your bills, taxes and track your spending. Probably the most helpful feature of the site is that it allows you to pay all of your bills in a single place, which can help you stay on top of your spending in the New Year.
Another insanely helpful feature of Mint is that it allows you to check your credit score. This is particularly useful for setting and maintaining your financial goals in 2015 because a good credit score can make a huge difference in your life. If your car up and dies on you, a good credit score can make obtaining a rental car easier. A good credit score can also improve the maximum limit on your credit cards and your ability to qualify for loans.
By efficiently tracking your bills, credit score, and savings, Mint makes achieving your financial goals more obtainable.
To manage your bills from your smartphone, you can also download the iOS and Android apps.

FlexScore

flexscore site
FlexScore calculates a personal finance score based on how well you’re managing your money. The best part? You get a free, updated financial analysis that helps you understand how your every purchase affects your financial future.
A really good motivator that FlexScore provides is an analysis of how well you’re doing compared to your peers. That way, you can stay motivated to keep improving your financial situation, or feel great about how you stack up to others in your age group.
FlexScore also makes financial management a game (who knew you could? ) by deeming “financial independence” as a FlexScore of 1,000. Your score is calculated by your assets, investments, debt and other financial factors to determine where you are in the FlexScore range. Until you reach 1,000, FlexScore will continue to provide you with free advice about how you can improve your score and better manage your finances.
You can also use the FlexScore iOS app.

Lifestyle Resolutions

lifestyle resolutions
Lastly, many people desire a more organized life and the New Year is the perfect time to put some order back into yours.
As you learn to better manage your time, you’ll find more time for the things that are the most important to you. The following five websites can help you complete your desired lifestyle changes in the coming year.

StickK

stikk site
Regardless of the details of your New Year’s resolution, StickK will help you get there. The site prompts you to create a “commitment contract” that holds you responsible for achieving a personal goal. It’s completely customizable, allowing you to add different stakes to your agreement with yourself.
If you really need some extra motivation to commit to your New Year’s resolutions, you might like to know that StikK was developed by Yale University economists. They researched the effectiveness of commitment contracts and found that people who set stakes for themselves are far more likely to achieve their goals. By setting stakes, you agree to put money on the line as a motivator to help you achieve your goals. Setting stakes is entirely optional within StickK. You can skip this step all together or enter a small amount if you so choose.
The idea behind setting stakes is that, for each week you don’t move toward your resolution or goal, you have to pay out that much money. So if your goal is to lose a pound a week, and you don’t lose a pound for 3 weeks, you have to pay 3 x the stake you’ve set for yourself. If you’re really unmotivated, this could get expensive, but that’s also a great way to motivate yourself to do something!

Quizlet

quizlet site
Quizlet is a free website that lets you set up quizzes for yourself to help you study. This is great for high school and college students who want to improve their grades, or for anyone who wants to learn a new language, instrument, or skill set in 2015.
With Quizlet, you learn through the collective knowledge gathered by other users. You can create study cards for yourself, or create a class about a subject that interests you. Conversely, you can join a class or study a set of cards created by other users. This essentially means that some of the information on Quizlet might not be as accurate or up to date as an actual course in a subject, but it’s a good way to brush up on knowledge or find a starting point for learning a subject. (To find more ways to helpful study cards, check out these flash card apps.)
You can also expand your knowledge by downloading Quizlet’s mobile apps, or by  signing up for a Quizlet Plus account ($15/year) or a Quizlet Teacher account ($25/year), which lets you track other users’ progress and knowledge growth.

HassleMe

hassleme site
Everyone needs a reminder from time to time. With HassleMe, you decide on the frequency in which you need to be reminded about a goal and the site sends hassling reminders to your email inbox. You simply set the interval of days you want to be hassled and type the exact message you want to be hassled with.
This site could literally be used for any New Year’s resolution since you can customize what the message says. Furthermore, it’s also a good motivation tool in general. For example, I set up a hassle to tell me “Remember to be awesome!” every 3 days, just to make sure my positivity is at it’s peak. You can use HassleMe to set similar motivational hassles, or use it to remind you to work out, to not eat junk food, to mediate today, or to do all of the above! You can set as many hassles as you like, but they’ll all be going to your inbox, so setting too many might do more harm than good.

Google+ Hangouts

google  hangouts site
Google+ Hangouts can be used in many different ways, but we like the idea of using them to host a mastermind group. This is essentially a Google+ hangout with a focus on a specific subject.
If you want to be held accountable for working toward your New Year’s resolutions, a mastermind group is a wise choice. The group you create should consist of your like-minded peers who want to achieve similar goals. By having Hangouts with them regularly, you can discuss how you’ve progressed, any setbacks you’ve faced and offer advice to one another about how to press on to achieve your dreams.
The really cool thing about Google+ Hangouts is that it allows you to connect with anyone who has the Internet, not just your neighbors and local friends. Check out popular Twitter hashtags related to your New Year’s goals and find some users to invite to your hangout — you could get people from all over the world to push toward their New Year’s resolutions with you!
To use Hangouts on the go, download the iOS or Android app.

Coolendar

coolendar site
If you want to stay organized in 2015, consider Coolendar. It’s a simple planning software calendar that efficiently maps out your schedule so you can stay on top of your daily responsibilities and your New Year’s goals.
Of course, as a calendar, this site allows you to pick a specific date by which you want to achieve your resolutions. However, it also allows you to plan out the process along the way, shooting notifications to your inbox, messenger, mobile device, or Twitter account when you need to complete a step, meet a milestone or accomplish any other event on the path to meeting your goals.
You also decide if you need to be alerted about something more than once. When you receive a notification for one of your Coolendar events, you decide if you should reschedule it which allows you to adjust your planned goals to what’s happening in the immediate moment.
If you think Coolendar just isn’t right for you, you can also check out 1Calendar as an alternative.

Be the Change You Want to See (With a Little Help, Of Course)

When the ball drops at 12:00 am on January 1st, remember that you have the potential to accomplish whatever you want in 2015. Even if ghosts of previously failed New Year’s resolutions are haunting your memory, don’t be discouraged.
The power to meet your goals is in your hands, and there are many incredible resources out there to help you along the way.
Good luck – and Happy New Year!
What are your goals for 2015? I’d love to hear about them in the comments section below.
Image Credit:  New Year’s Resolutions Via Shutterstock, JESHOOTSLollemyArtPhotographyjarmoluk, and JayMantri Source: www.makeuseof.com

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