Every year I make resolutions (which I prefer to think of as "setting goals"), with a track record of limited success. This year is no different: I have been thinking about what sort of things I'd like to accomplish this year, and have written them down in a rough draft. What's new (and hopefully improved) for this year is that insofar as possible, I am appending to each goal specific, actionable steps to help me achieve that goal; e.g., if one of my goals is to complete my writing projects, I have under that goal "Write a minimum of 1000 words a day."
For some, this might seem like a no-brainer, and, indeed, I have heard before the advice about being specific in setting goals. But the "a-ha" insight for me lies in not only being specific about the goals themselves, but in getting specific about the steps necessary to achieve those goals. It forces me to think more clearly about the goals - thus, the goals are more realistic, giving me a better chance at success.