How to pick a New Year’s resolution you can stick to

By Greg Stevens

Most people fail to follow through with their New Year’s resolutions because they do not choose resolutions that are compatible with their personality types.

People either pick generic resolutions that nobody ever succeeds at (“I will be healthier”), or they pick resolutions that they think will be “challenging” and thus are completely incompatible with who they are: the sensitive artist vows to be more organised, the competitive businessman vows to be more empathetic and so on.

With resolutions like these, you are doing nothing more than setting yourself up for failure. So why not usher in 2014 by devising the best possible New Year’s resolution for you, based on your individual personality type?

Your Personality Type

First, you should determine your “personality type” according to the Briggs-Meyers typology, a very well-known and well-established personality assessment scheme within the field of psychology. There are many places you can get a free online assessment, such as So go do that, and we’ll see you back here in 3-5 minutes.

Now, having done the the test you’ll have been assigned a “type” that is coded using four letters. It is a fascinating system of personality classification that you can learn about easily by doing simple web searches on “Briggs-Meyers personality test”.

All you have to do now is pick out your 2014 New Years Resolution using the list of tips below, based on your personality classification. We have used the best scientific resources and evidence to devise a resolution that you should be able to actually achieve.

If you have been frustrated, year after year, by setting up goals that never seem to pan out, then this list is for you. Remember, our goal is to make sure that you pick a resolution that you can actually accomplish, based on the strengths and weaknesses of your personality.

Your New Year’s resolution

Type: ISTJ
Personality: You are quiet, serious, and earn success by thoroughness and dependability. You are practical, matter-of-fact, realistic, and responsible. ISTJs  seem to perform at highest efficiency when employing a step-by-step approach.
Resolution: “This year I will do something that I’ve never done before. But only after researching it thoroughly, understanding all of the steps involved and making sure that it is affordable.”

Type: ISFJ
Personality: You are quiet, friendly, responsible, and conscientious. You are committed and steady in meeting your obligations. ISFJs are extremely warm and demonstrative within small groups.
Resolution: “This year I will plan a party. Not a big one, though, more of a get-together of close friends who I know will get along with one another.”

Type: INFJ
Personality: You seek meaning and connection in ideas, relationships, and material possessions. You want to understand what motivates people, and are insightful about others. INFJs are champions of the oppressed and downtrodden.
Resolution: “This year I will pick an important social or political cause and donate my time by spreading the word and helping them to raise money.”

Mark Zuckerberg is probably an INTJ

Mark Zuckerberg is probably an INTJ

Type: INTJ
Personality: You have an original mind and great drive for implementing your ideas and achieving your goals. You quickly see patterns in external events and develop long-range explanatory perspectives. INTJs are system-builders who seek to understand or create complex systems.
Resolution: “This year I will build something from scratch: a computer, a working model train, a bicycle, whatever is able to capture my attention the longest.”

Type: ISTP
Personality: You are tolerant and flexible, a quiet observer until a problem appears, then you act quickly to find workable solutions. ISTPs are often reluctant to work the grind and follow day-to-day rules, but will throw themselves energetically at a project where they are needed and when they feel they will be able to approach it on their own terms.
Resolution: “This year I will pick my friend with the biggest flaw and fix him. Or at least, work on fixing him until he gets annoyed and puts up too much resistance. After all, there’s only so much one can do.”

Type: ISFP
Personality: You are quiet, friendly, sensitive, and kind. You enjoy the present moment and what’s going on around you. ISFPs are impulsive and unpredictable and will react negatively to people whom they feel are restricting them.
Resolution: “This year I will set aside five hours each week to just do whatever the hell I want, no matter what anybody else says.”

Type: INFP
Personality: You are idealistic, loyal to your values and to people who are important to you. You want an external life that is congruent with your values. INFPs are prone to view the world in abstract or fantastical “Good versus Evil” terms, but tend to be optimists who believe that good will always win out.
Resolution: “This year I will donate time to a good cause that will help people, such as donating food or working for the homeless. As long as it doesn’t lead to any public confrontations.”

Many geeks are type INTP

Many geeks are type INTP

Type: INTP
Personality: You seek to develop logical explanations for everything that interests you. You are theoretical and abstract, interested more in ideas than in social interaction. INTPs are logical and analytical, but often limited by an insecurity and sense of impending failure.
Resolution: “This year I will come up with my own theory of how to make the world a better place, and I will write it down in a little notebook that I show to nobody.”

Type: ESTP
Personality: You are flexible and tolerant, and you take a pragmatic approach focused on immediate results. Theories and conceptual explanations bore you. ESTPs have a natural drive to best the competition.
Resolution: “This year I will improve my score in the one game or sport that I’m not already perfect at. Unless I’m perfect at all of the games and sports I play, in which case I will learn a new one so that I can beat people at that as well.”

Type: ESFP
Personality: You are outgoing, friendly and accepting. An exuberant lover of life, people and material comforts. ESFPs love people, excitement, telling stories and having fun.
Resolution: “This year I will go to even more parties than I did last year and raise my Klout score by at least 5 points.”

Chelsea, 24, is an ESFP

Chelsea, 24, is an ESFP

Type: ENFP
Personality: You are warmly enthusiastic and imaginative. You see life as full of possibilities. For some ENFPs, relationships can be seriously tested by their short attention spans and emotional needs. They are easily intrigued and distracted by new friends and acquaintances.
Resolution: “This year I will meet new people and convince them that I am really charming. Really, really charming. I will also try not to lose all of my old friends in the process, but you know … no promises there.”

Type: ENTP
Personality: You are quick, ingenious, stimulating, alert and outspoken. You are also resourceful in solving new and challenging problems. ENTPs are usually verbally as well as cerebrally quick and generally love to argue – both for its own sake, and to show off their debating skills.
Resolution: “This year I will get into even more arguments on Twitter and Reddit and I will win them all!!!”

Type: ESTJ
Personality: You are practical, realistic, traditional and matter-of-fact. You are decisive and quickly move to implement decisions. ESTJs are joiners who thrive on “normalcy”, continuity and well-established traditions. They seek out like-minded companions in clubs, civic groups, churches and other traditional service organisations.
Resolution: “This year I will make sure that I judge people who seem to be different from me in some way. From a distance.”

Type: ESFJ
Personality: You are warmhearted, conscientious, and cooperative. You want harmony in your environment. ESFJs are easily wounded. And when wounded, their emotions will not be contained.
Resolution: “This year I promise to be honest and let everyone know what I’m thinking and feeling. Brutally honest… all the time. Especially if they are mean to me.”

If you get wounded easily, you might be an ESFJ

If you get wounded easily, you might be an ESFJ

Type: ENFJ
Personality: You are warm, empathetic, responsive, and responsible. You are highly attuned to the emotions, needs and motivations of others. Many ENFJs have tremendous power to manipulate others with their phenomenal interpersonal skills and unique salesmanship.
Resolution: “This year I will use my charm to get someone to buy that thing that I’ve been meaning to get rid of for a long time but haven’t gotten around to ditching yet.”

Type: ENTJ
Personality: You are frank, decisive, and assume leadership readily. ENTJs have a natural tendency to marshal and direct. ENTJs are often “larger than life” in describing their projects or proposals.
Resolution: “I will use the internet to start a cult, or an online start-up business. Or both. The strategy will be the same.”