Sunday, December 24, 2006

Happy New Year!
May it be everything you want it to be.

New Year - New Plan?

New resolutions are only as good as the person who makes them. If you are anything like the rest of us you have made and broken more resolutions than you can remember.
Let's make a change this time. Let's make and stick to our resolutions.
What can you do differently?

1. Make only one or two resolutions.
Don't try to make a huge lot of changes all at once. There will be too many to cope with and to keep control of. Pick only one or two that you really want to work on.

2. Make sure that your resolution is clear to you.
For example, instead of resolving to lose weight this year, pick 2 things that you can do to help you lose weight and work on those. You might choose to go for a walk once a day, and to stop buying take away food. These are easy to monitor so you will know if you have done them or not, and you WILL need to monitor them. I think it is important, too, that instead of resolving to give something up you resolve to replace the 'bad' with the 'good'. An example would be to replace alcohol with water, or to replace those hot chips with fresh vegetables. Imagine a life with no more chocolate? I can't, but I can see me replacing my nightly chocolate snack with a low fat decadent hot chocolate drink. That is manageable. It seems to take away the feeling that you are depriving yourself of something.

3. Tell someone about it.
It helps if someone else knows what you are intending to do. Apart from keeping you honest they may also be able to help you resist temptation. Select someone that you know who is positive and encouraging and they can support you during those hard first days.

4. Think about your environment.
Try not to put yourself in the way of temptation. You know that if you go for drinks after work on Friday you will buy those fish and chips on the way home. For the first couple of weeks, it will pay you to avoid the Friday fun. Once you have settled into your new routines it won't be so hard to balance the fun with the resolution. Those new good habits will show themselves when you least expect it.

5. Keep at it.
Don't expect it all to happen at once. You will possibly fall off the rails more than once, but the key to winning is to get back up and start again. Those migrating geese don't get to the warm climates in one flight. Even they take a break here and there. Just keep you eye on the goal and you will get there. Remember, it takes at least 21 days to establish a new habit. It doesn't happen overnight so don't beat yourself up if you fall. That is all part of the way a new habit settles in.

Finally, don't forget to congratulate yourself when you achieve your resolution. It is important to acknowledge that you have done well, so treat yourself to something special. Just don't make it those hot chips!

Anne Maybus [B.A., GradDipBus (HRD)} has 15 years experience in human resources. She is the owner of Go and have a look!

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