You make well-meaning resolutions to improve your life. But your resolutions fade under the stress of multiple demands on your time and attention. Oftentimes the resolutions are history before the month is done. How can we ensure that we actually benefit from the good intentions that we made with such conviction?
Many years ago I made an earnest resolution to work less and to spend more time on my personal life, family and health. Being a type A personality, it was easier to say that than to follow through. By late in the same month, as I am running through another airport, I realized that I am already back to my old pattern of working seven days a week. On the next plane ride I took the time to ask myself a few hard questions. From that experience I developed these Five Guidelines to have a Happier, Healthier and more Successful Life. Isn't that what we are ultimately after?
1. Make resolutions that you can manage. Specify your desired end result and make the goals measureable. For example, instead of saying that you want to lose weight, give yourself a specific time frame for a number of pounds or inches broken down into smaller pieces so that you have incremental targets to meet. Make the objectives a slight stretch but achievable. You are more likely to continue once you see positive progress towards your ultimate goal.
Limit the number of resolutions. Your mind can only deal with so many tasks at a time. Limit your resolutions to fewer than seven and prioritize them. That way you can work on them in order of importance to maximize your success potential.
2. Review your life mission before you make your resolutions. What are the most important things in your life? When you make your commitments based on what you truly value, instead of what someone else or society tells you that you ought to do, you will be more motivated to work towards them.
3. Get Partners and Mentors. There are people who share the same goals you do. Or they have experience in what you are trying to achieve, and/or they would be supportive of your plans. Enlist their support. Form a mastermind group or network to encourage, guide and support each other. Ask people with experience for advice and inspiration. You can connect in person, by phone and via the Internet on affinity sites, pages and chat rooms. Having partners and mentors in your goals will keep you motivated. They can also guide and alert you on the pitfalls, secrets and shortcuts to success.
4. Make a Positive Resolution. Make a resolution that involves something fun for you. For example, if you want to strengthen your presentation skills, do something new, say, singing in public. Learn a song and sing it at a karaoke. Or learn a new sport, like paddle boarding, yoga or Pilates. That way you will be working on your self-confidence in public settings and your physical fitness in a way that is also fun for you.
When we look at the positives in our lives, we are encouraged to keep going. One of the main reasons for dropping our goals is because we feel pessimistic. An optimistic outlook energizes us and moves us towards our goals.
5. Relax and Have Fun! Whatever your resolutions, there are good reasons for you to make them. They will improve your life in some way. Allow yourself some latitude when you lapse. You are already making progress when you recognize that you've missed the mark. It is a sign that you are making an effort. Just pick yourself up and try again. Give yourself credit for each step and small milestone. Share your success with your buddies, and remember the reason(s) for your resolutions. Life is fun! Consider the alternative.
Some of the most popular resolutions made are for physical health, work, finances and relationships. Beneath all the resolutions is the desire to live a healthy, sustainably balanced life with joy and inner peace.
Establishing your life purpose is the foundation to living the life of your dreams. My little book, "Living the Life of Your Dreams" won the Global eBook of the Year 2011 in the Inspirational/Visionary category because it motivated so many find their life mission in a short stories and handbook format. May it help you too. http://www.marilyntam.com/books.html
Excessive stress is dangerous and can even kill you. Joan Borsenko's 2011 book, "Fried, Why You Burn out and How to Revive" helps you get to a healthy place of dynamic balance between doing and being.
I believe you should take love advice from couples who have the kind of deep, loving, magical relationship that truly inspires LOVE! Arielle Ford's new book, Wabi Sabi Love: The Ancient Art of Finding Perfect Love in Imperfect Relationships is being released right now. If your relationship is less than fantastic, this is the solution!
Have a fulfilling, healthy and happy day, month and year!