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Red Alert on Resolutions

Most people crash and burn with New Year's resolutions. Here's why and some tips to help you increase the odds of success.

Make progress instead of promises!

A lot is written about resolutions.  My first thought is, don't make them (but we won't really go there).  Most of us set out with lofty, admirable goals, and, quite frankly, without a clear way to accomplish them.  Time passes, and with it our good intentions lose momentum.  All too often, a feeling of guilt sets in.  "How difficult is it to...?" you ask yourself.  "I'm a smart person.  At work I am more than competent.  So why can't I do this?" Relax, take a breath, and give yourself a break. Odds are you are managing the rest of your life well.  But this resolution is 'one more thing' and brings lots of pressure with it.

The pressure of resolutions starts you off on the wrong foot.  And then there is the issue of trying to tackle the whole thing at once.  Want to start an exercise regimen?  Setting a goal of an hour at the gym five days a week is probably too big a leap for most of us.  Break it down into smaller chunks. If the end goal is better health and endurance, a little at a time is better than starting out with a bang, only to crash and burn. Set yourself up to succeed, not to fail.

Many people give up on change within a few weeks.  Often the goal is too... (read more)

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