BOSTON (CBS) – We are several weeks into the New Year and the diet and gym ads are driving me to the cookie jar! About half of Americans (46%) were thinking about making resolutions in December. And by now many have already abandoned their New Year resolutions. According to the Farmer’s Almanac 88% of adults make resolutions but only 20% keep them.
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Most resolutions are broken or never begun by February. Why? Because we set unrealistic goals for ourselves and we don’t put together a plan to help us accomplish those goals.
I have a list of the most popular resolution. I found them on the Fed’s website first.gov:
- Lose Weight
- Manage Debt
- Save Money
- Get Fit
- Drink Less Alcohol
- Get a Better Education
- Get a Better Job
- Manage Stress
- Quit Smoking Now
- Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle
- Take a Trip
- Volunteer to Help Others
I would recommend if any of these resolutions are on your list check out the resources I found. If you take a close look at the list the reality of it is; we all want to be Healthy, Wealthy and Wise. So we are going to work on those things this week.
To achieve your goals you need to prioritize. What is important? Write it down. Then take your list and put together a plan and a time line. When do you want to accomplish those resolutions? In addition, you will need to find resources to help. Think about using shorter goals to achieve bigger goals. You want to lose weight, consider starting an exercise program,
Think about enlisting the help of a friend, your family, an organization like Weight Watchers or AA. You need someone to be accountable to. And someone who will share in your small victories. You will do better if you tell people your resolutions and why they are important to you. You want to lose weight to lower your blood pressure; you want to stop drinking to keep your job; you want to save money to take a vacation.
The key to success with a resolution is to be realistic. You will not be able to lose 25 pounds by Valentine’s Day. You are not a contestant on the TV show the Biggest Loser. But 3 to 5 pounds is realistic. Nor can you be out debt in a month. But in a year or 18 months it is achievable.
One more thing: Wanting to quit smoking is made easier because the government is making it harder and harder to light up. There is no smoking in public buildings. Many buildings also now have a 50 foot no smoking restriction from the entrance and in the winter when it is cold that is far away. In California if you have a minor in the car you are not supposed to light up.