Top 4 New Year's Resolutions

Happy New Year!

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New Year's Resolutions

Much like the birth of a newborn baby, New Year's signifies a time of hope, change, and renewal of our spirits. Even if only symbolically by flipping the page of a calendar, it gently reminds us to look back over the previous year for ways to become better humans, and to be grateful we've survived another year. So take a look at the top 4 New Year's Resolutions, and make yours happen this year!

New Year's Resolutions

How long are you able to keep the momentum going with your New Year's Resolutions?

  • 1-6 weeks, then for some reason I can't stay committed
  • 6 weeks to 3 months...then I just give up!
  • 3 months through the entire year! It takes work and dedication, but I've done it!
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How to succeed at your New Year's Resolutions

  1. Spend some time brainstorming.
  2. Create a realistic and attainable set of goals, write these down, as well as outline a plan and time frame to make them happen. By knowing exactly what you want to accomplish, you know where you have to concentrate your efforts. Even if it takes a series of "mini" goals to reach the final target.
  3. Remember that most New Year's Resolutions are lifestyle changes, it's going to take effort, perseverance, patience, and may feel very uncomfortable and awkward at first. You may encounter relapses, when this happens, focus on getting back on track.

SMART Goals

An excellent way of making New Year's Resolutions long lasting is to use the SMART mnemonic. While there are many variants, SMART usually stands for:

  • S – Specific (or well-defined).
  • M – Measurable (and Meaningful).
  • A – Attainable (or Action-Oriented).
  • R – Relevant (or Rewarding).
  • T – Time-bound (or Trackable).

Fitness resolutions

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#1 Get in shape, lose weight, eat healthy

Many people around the world want to lose weight, eat better and get in shape. Not only for New Year's, but for a long and healthy life. Making diet and physical changes cannot simply be done with a quick resolution. You need to incorporate health maintenance and eating habits as a lifestyle! That means, not just for this year, but forever!

Again the importance of a plan cannot be understated. In order to succeed at this lifestyle change, you have to commit to yourself and to your health.

  1. Do not deprive yourself of your favorite food or treats, telling yourself "I will never eat cheesecake again" creates a binge pattern. Or worse yet, makes you give up and revert back to old habits! And that is the last thing you want!
  2. Moderate.
  3. Restrict calories.
  4. Get exercising! First, do what is appropriate and manageable for your specific health state and conditions. Consult a physician if needed, getting a physical is never a bad idea! Start small and increase intensity, routines, and changes.
  5. Consider joining a gym or exercise group which will help you stay accountable and focused.
  6. Celebrate and monitor success to improve momentum and stay committed!

Quit smoking

Source

#2 Give up vices, like smoking, drinking, or other drug use

Addictions can be the most difficult to change or stop all-together. Not only are they physical but mental, and often they are deeply integrated in our psyches and every day habits. Drinking and smoking being the major offenders. To the right, I've included other articles that are helpful for educating yourself and offering suggestions for quitting smoking success.

As with any addiction: food, smoking, drinking, or other substances, the main ingredient for success is the true and heartfelt desire to quit.

  1. Commit to quitting, you need to decide 100% that your health is priority.
  2. Guard your sobriety as if it was gold!
  3. Consider what you truly are losing by giving up something so unhealthy, keep this thought or thoughts at the forefront of your mind, especially when encountering triggers.
  4. Note your triggers and create new activities to put in their place.
  5. Join a support group.
  6. If you fall short and have a relapse, DO NOT give up!

Any success when it comes to addiction is always worthy of celebration.

#3 Organize finances, get out of debt, pay off bills, save money

Many people are up to their ass in debt and financial stress. They lose sleep over finances, damage personal relationships with arguments sometimes end up divorced, and encounter depression.

It doesn't have to be this way and you don't have to live like a poor person to make some significant changes. Use my tips and suggestions to save money, links are located to the right.

  1. Get organized, buy file folders to prioritize bills, expenses, and credit or student loans.
  2. Define your standard of living and figure out what you are willing and able to do without, give up, or modify. Brainstorm for ideas to generate additional income.
  3. Get rid of unused credit cards, or open accounts that you no longer have a purpose for. It's as simple as calling the credit card company and closing the account.
  4. Set payment goals for debt in reasonable and attainable intervals.
  5. Take a large deep breath, work on your plan, and remember that life "is what it is" and be still. If you are Christian, use a mantra, one as precious as "be still and know that I am God" to renew your faith and know that everything will be okay and work out. Worrying far into the future is futile, it's not here yet, so no point in driving yourself insane over it.

#4 Improve your education or find a better job

Self improvement should be a lifelong process, as well as feeding your need for mental, physical, and spiritual enlightenment. Doing these things shouldn't be a simple New Year's Resolution, but even if you are labeling it as one, it's a great start! And a step in the right direction.

  1. Always have your resume updated, seek help if needed from a career counselor, or even your local library. If you're just looking to change jobs, start looking! Apply for jobs you may not even be entirely qualified for, if it is something you're passionate about, or just really want, apply! What is the worst that can happen? You get rejected! So what. All you have to do is try.
  2. Make a point to learn something new every day, this could be as simple as taking up a new hobby, learning how to cook, reading a new book, taking a local Yoga or community center class. Anything that feeds and improves the mind is the goal!
  3. Research career options, income expectations, and evaluate your current skill set to get a clear picture of which direction you need to go to make your dream job a reality.

Happy New Year!

And always remember, life is a gift. Celebrate and appreciate it. You only have one, so live each day happy, excited, and strive toward growth, change, and perfection!

© 2013 Rebecca

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Comments 10 comments

FlourishAnyway profile image

FlourishAnyway 2 years ago from USA

Excellent hub, Rebecca! I like the inclusion of SMART goals. Voted up +++ and sharing.


Bishop55 profile image

Bishop55 2 years ago from USA Author

Thanks! :)


stephanie mclain profile image

stephanie mclain 2 years ago from Texas

Love the SMART! I don't think I've ever stuck to a resolution, but that doesn't keep me from trying each year. :) Voting up! Thanks for sharing!


mathira profile image

mathira 2 years ago from chennai

Bishop, when we make resolutions we should stick to it. Your suggestions were good and inspiring.


informationshelte profile image

informationshelte 2 years ago

Bishop55,

Your article offers excellent guidance and practical tips on how to make and stick to New Year's Resolutions, as we are about to enter 2014.

As habit is second nature, changing our old selves can be a really hard thing. However, we still have to try to make some steps of improvement. The step-by-step approach can be slow, but more effective in the long run.


Eiddwen profile image

Eiddwen 2 years ago from Wales

A wonderful hub to vote up. Wishing you a great year ahead.

Eddy.


Bishop55 profile image

Bishop55 2 years ago from USA Author

Thanks everyone for all the comments! I think 2014 is going to be a very interesting year. As for habits and changes what are you all looking forward to?


teaches12345 profile image

teaches12345 2 years ago

Restricting calories is what I am latching onto the next few weeks in order to balance my health once again. The holidays do take a toll on you, it's fun but it throws you off. Excellent advice, Bishop55.


stephanie mclain profile image

stephanie mclain 2 years ago from Texas

Hmm, habits and changes?

I've decided this is the year that I work more towards being at peace with myself. I have struggled with anxiety and depression since I was a teenager, so this year I want to concentrate on just being still and quiet, on just being and not stressing out at every little thing. It's a work in progress. :)


Bishop55 profile image

Bishop55 2 years ago from USA Author

Hey Stephanie...I'm right there with you. I've had an exceptionally turbulent 2011-2013. I'm trying now to just chill out before I lose my mind. Some things you may find interesting...yoga, meditation, and lots of new age "living in the now" books. Thanks everyone for the comments.

Oh...and Teaches...I have the opposite issue with calorie restriction, I need to pretty much force feed myself. I am trying not to dwindle away to nothing, sometimes I'm barely hitting 500 calories a day, i just lose my appetite. it's so stupid anymore. Seems the point is to find a balnce in everything!

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