As 2023 comes to an end, it's time to reflect on the events of the past year and set new goals for a better, healthier New Year. Although resolutions are easy to make, most often, they fail within weeks as the spirit and excitement of the New Year fade.

Studies show that about half of all adults make New Year's resolutions, but only less than 10% manage to keep them for more than a few months. One common reason for failed resolutions is unrealistic goal setting. Setting achievable, specific and measurable goals can help you stick to your resolutions. For example, a person who wants to reduce drinking alcohol should not try to quit all of a sudden but set practical goals like limiting drinking to once a week or so.

If your resolutions are failing, it could also mean that you are trying to change too many things at once. Changing habits like smoking or drinking takes time. For a healthier New Year, focus on meeting one goal at a time. Once you succeed in making a change, you can move on to the next goal.

Here are some practical goals you can set for a healthy 2024:

Get good sleep - Sleep deprivation is associated with an array of health issues, including weight gain, heart disease and depression. The quality of sleep is decided by various factors like screen time, room lighting, caffeine intake and diet. Setting measurable goals like fixing a consistent sleep time and cutting down on caffeine intake can help ensure better sleep.

Reduce prolonged sitting - A sedentary lifestyle that involves sitting for long periods can be harmful to health. This New Year, you can decide to sit less and walk more. Taking short, frequent breaks while at the office can help to counteract the effects of prolonged sitting. Aim to stand up at least once every 30 minutes or make phone calls by standing or walking to reduce sitting time. Using a standing desk for work and conducting meetings while walking or standing can also help cut down sitting time.

Eat more whole foods - One way to improve your health is by ensuring you are getting the right nutrition from the food. This New Year, commit to include more vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds and whole grains in the diet while cutting down on processed food and added sugar.

Engage in a physical activity every day- Even if you are not able to hit the gym or do regular workouts, ensure you engage in at least one physical activity that interests you every day. Try to get at least 30 minutes of physical activities like cycling, swimming or walking.

Limit screen time - Increased screen time is associated with issues such as poor sleep, poor mental health, eye strain and reduced productivity. However, if you decide to abruptly stop this completely, it might be impractical to execute. So the key is to limit the time spent in front of the screens. Experts recommend limiting screen time outside of work to less than two hours per day.

Drink more water - Drinking enough water will help prevent dehydration, improve overall health and solve issues such as constipation and kidney stones. Simple steps like substituting sugar-sweetened beverages with water during meals, carrying your water bottle to work and refilling it throughout the day can ensure you get enough water.

Quit smoking - Smoking is a major contributor to preventable deaths globally. Research indicates that the human body experiences positive changes as soon as one quits smoking. For those trying to kick the habit in the new year, consider transitioning gradually to a tobacco-free life. Simple steps like delaying the first cigarette of the day, increasing the time between each smoke, refraining from smoking at night and confining smoking to specific areas can help in a gradual and successful quitting process.

Practice meditation - Meditation helps to reduce stress and anxiety, and improve overall mental well-being. Include at least 30 minutes of meditation in your daily routine to relax your mind and body.