From the deadly global coronavirus pandemic to a contentious election season, racial unrest, job losses and financial difficulties for millions of Americans, 2020 is a year that people are ready to see end.
While many people may be just trying to grit their way through December to get to Jan. 1, 2021, throwing in the towel on 2020 is not the best idea, says Rachel Hollis, a motivational speaker and the New York Times best-selling author of "Didn't See That Coming," "Girl, Wash Your Face" and "Girl, Stop Apologizing."
"Everyone keeps talking like, 'I can't wait until 2020 is over,' as if the clock hits midnight on Dec. 31 and all of our problems go away," Hollis told "Good Morning America." "I think that people are in for a very painful reality when that doesn't happen."
Hollis's philosophy is that life doesn't change when a New Year begins, but when people are ready to make changes in their lives, whether that happens on a Sunday, Monday or Tuesday of any week, or any month.
"If you could attach a feeling of change to Dec. 31, then you can attach that feeling of change to today," she said. "You don't need a new year to have a new perspective."
Hollis -- who writes in "Didn't See That Coming," about overcoming hard things, including her own divorce -- says to set your resolutions now and then spend the rest of the year working to make them happen.
Her No. 1 tip to help ensure success is to stop thinking about motivation, and start thinking about the habits you can create now so that on Jan. 1 you're not relying on motivation to make a change.
"So often people ask me, 'How do you get motivated. How do I motivate myself?,' and I don't believe in trying to motivate yourself," said Hollis, also the host of the "Your Fave's Faves" podcast. "I believe in creating rituals and habits in your life that are so regular and normal for you that you don't even think about them anymore."
It takes 90 days, or three months, for a habit to become a way of life, according to Hollis. She recommends thinking about what change you can make for the next 90 days, whether that's waking up an hour early to have time for yourself, getting some kind of exercise for 30 minutes a day or making a healthy food swap.
Starting the change now will give you a 30-day head start come Jan. 1.
"Being intentional about finishing strong means that 2020 does not win," said Hollis. "It means that, hey, we all got off track at some point, but we're going to come back ... and we’re going to finish knowing that we did our very best to take care of ourselves."
Another tip from Hollis to do now, before the new year, is to think back to a painful time in your past, whether it was the loss of a loved one or a break up or a health scare, and to write down how you found strength in that time of your life.
Doing so will help give you perspective that difficult times happen for you, instead of to you. It will also show that this current hard time of 2020 will pass too, and will be something from which you can learn, according to Hollis.
"The thing that I know nobody wants to hear but it's still absolutely true is 2020 is not the last hard thing you will deal with in your life," she said. "Time will go on and we will create a new normal and we will learn to navigate this and something else is going to happen to you, so what does it look like right now to stand back up and go again."
Read more here about Hollis' Last 90 Days program that encourages people to set their New Year's resolutions early.