“Hope smiles from the threshold of the year to come, whispering ‘it will be happier’…”
Here we go, New Year’s Eve, tomorrow a fresh year and for many a fresh start. Since most folks will be celebrating or recovering from too much celebrating there will be no Daily tomorrow. As I told you over the last few days I have reached the age where I am comfortable making New Year’s resolutions that do not require super effort. In fact this year I am striving more for success in keeping my commitments rather than taking a chance on disappointment by taking on too much.
But I know most of you are on a high achiever path so your sights are probably set pretty high. I just got this article written by Dr. LeslieBeth Wish that may be a help to you. I have made some minor cuts to fit the Daily but kept all her tips.
Beating the Odds of Breaking your New Year’s Resolutions: Tips that Work
Many New Year’s resolutions are broken by the end of January. If that sentence describes you, don’t fret. New Year’s resolutions are hard to keep because we humans—and probably most primates—have brains that are designed for pleasurable sensations and encounters such as eating delicious food, having sex, socializing or mastering a difficult task. Unfortunately, there isn’t a magic pill or process that guarantees New Year’s resolutions success, but here are some tips that have worked for the women in my study and for people in general. You will have to experiment to see which ones work for you.
Smart Steps for New Year’s Resolutions Success
- Evaluate to motivate. Make a list of all the things you’d like to change. Now rate them in both in degree of importance and difficulty. Ask yourself, “How likely am I to do this?” Since health issues are often the most important, you might choose to work on that. Yet, some health-related problems such as losing weight are the toughest ones to address. What should you do?
- Build in on-going help and support. Get professional guidance immediately. You don’t want that first week at the gym to be your last. The best solutions combine motivation and pleasure. Tell all your family members and friends about your resolutions and ask them to help you—or join you! Get a buddy. Tell a friend to check in on you—or go with you or speak up when you shop or eat too much. Going it alone courts failure. Or, if you really want to quit smoking, consult a professional and find a support group.
- Take small steps to train your brain. Rather than make big resolutions, vow to take one small step a day. Allow your brain to get used to going without the pleasure of a cigarette or drink or dessert. In some cases, though, eliminating totally your unwanted behavior works better. Now you can see why resolutions are so complicated!
- Know your moods triggers. Get mindful of your feelings and state of mind. Do you feel insecure, lonely or unloved? What have you done in the past to soothe you—drink, eat, shop, for example? Ask yourself: “How am I feeling right now and what would I normally do about it that is not good for me? And what can I do to handle my situation that is good for me?”
- Start again—and learn. Don’t give up. Get back on that horse, as they say. Giving up old behavior that made you feel less stressed and unhappy is difficult to change. Learn from your setback. Ask yourself, “What triggered my relapse?” When you relapse, which is very common, just start over—and be more vigilant about your triggers. Remember, behavior is a choice.
- Create rewards to assist your brain to connect pleasure with discipline. A reward might be permission to eat one or two small bites or buy one item under a certain amount—or not buy anything at all! Eventually, your success will become its own reward. Or, create a money jar where you deposit a dollar or all your change every time you stay on course. Or, don’t allow yourself to watch your favorite show or use social media until you complete your task for the day.
- Be your own buddy and stay positive. Think about your previous success in overcoming your urge to spend, smoke, eat, drink or do any other undesirable behavior. Keep a Success Journal so you can read what you did to recognize and resist the temptation to give in. Say these words out loud: “I know this change is difficult, but I deserve to be healthy and happy.”
“Tomorrow, is the first blank page of a 365 page book. Write a good one.”
If you are concerned about not following through on your New Year’s resolutions you might find one or more of these helpful.
- Read less.
- Gain weight.
- Stop exercising.
- Watch more TV.
- Procrastinate more.
- Drink. Drink some more.
- Start being superstitious.
- Spend more time at work.
- Stop bringing lunch from home: eat out more.
- Take up a new habit!
“There is a very easy way to return from a casino with a small fortune: go there with a large one.”
Tips to let you know if you are at a really bad party this year…
To give it a Times Square feel, everyone is groped, fondled and pick-pocketed
The ‘Party Hats’ look suspiciously like stolen traffic cones
There’s a “Happy 2012” sticker on the packet of shrimp you’ve been eating all night
It’s January 6th
At midnight everyone gathers around to watch your Uncle Earl’s pants drop
You hear a guy doing a count down before using the bathroom
The ‘Champagne’ tastes suspiciously like apple juice mixed with Alka Seltzer
A hangover is something to occupy a head that wasn’t used to the night before.
When the Jones family moved into their new house, a visiting relative asked the little five-year-old how he liked the new place.
“It’s great!” he said. “I have my own room, Mike has his own room, and Jamie has her own room. But, poor mom still has to sleep with dad.”
An old-timer is someone who remembers every detail of their life story, but cannot remember how many times they have told the same person.
Here a few New Year’s toasts you may want to use tonight
As you slide down the banisters of life, may the splinters never point the wrong way.
May the clouds in your life form only a background for a lovely sunset.
May your life be as beautiful as a summer day, with just enough clouds to make you appreciate the sunshine.
Success to the lover, honor to the brave, health to the sick, and freedom to the slave.
Good day, good health, good cheer, good night!
“Let this coming year be better than all the others. Vow to do some of the things you have always wanted to do but could not find the time. Call up a forgotten friend. Drop an old grudge, and replace it with some pleasant memories. Vow not to make a promise you do not think you can keep. Walk tall, and smile more. You will look 10 years younger. Do not be afraid to say, I love you. Say it again. They are the sweetest words in the world.”
Stay well, do good work, and have fun.
Management is not responsible for duplicates from previous dailies. The editor is somewhat senile.
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