The Golden Girls had it figured out: Life is better with friends. They motivate and support us through life’s adventures and changes, so why not lean on them to achieve our goals?

Find Your “Glass-Is-Half-Full” Friend

Science-backed data shows that the people we surround ourselves with influence how we act. It’s called social contagion theory. If you set a big goal but have veered off course a bit, find your friends who always see the silver lining and spend time with them. Check in with one another and give positive feedback and encouragement for the things you’ve done well.

Seek Out the Truth-Teller

While it helps to surround yourself with your most positive and uplifting friends, finding someone who can help you stick to your plan and achieve your goal is gold! We all have that one friend who can tell it like it is in the best way possible. Reach out to them and share your goal. Ask for their help in keeping you accountable.

For example, if you want to lose weight, share your food diary with your friend or let them know what days you are going to exercise and check in with them afterward.  If you and a friend happen to share a common goal, tackle it together! (Case in point, residents at Atria Darien tried a brand-new sport and supported each other to achieve their record-setting goals.)

Ask for Advice

Perhaps your goal is to try yoga, but you’ve never gone to a class before and you’re a little intimidated. Find a friend or family member who has practiced yoga and ask for their advice on classes, videos or equipment. Tapping into the treasure trove of knowledge that friends possess can give you a confidence boost – and the bonus is that you and your pal have a new hobby to bond over.

Celebrate Your Wins Together

A big goal can be broken down into smaller, short-term goals that can be celebrated with positive rewards. Make a friendly wager, with the winner receiving a reward after reaching their mini-goal. Better yet, make the reward something to help achieve the goal, such as a new yoga mat or art supplies.

Stay focused and keep your eye on your 2017 goals! And don’t forget to say “Thank you for being a friend” to those who help you achieve them.

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