Sugar and Spice Advice: New Year’s Resolutions, anyone?


Every week on the county Intranet one of the people in IT posts a one question survey. The question for this week is “Do you plan to make any New Year’s Resolutions?” Can you guess the percentage of people who said yes and those who said no? 56% percent of county employees who responded said that they would make new resolutions. I was among the 63% who said they wouldn’t. And it is not because I don’t have any goals for this year, because I do. (I want to see my blog grow, and Daphne’s and my Sugar and Spice business to take off. I want to make more healthy home cooked meals that are economical. I want to be more patient and weigh less.) It seems that New Year’s Resolutions come unraveled after a few weeks or months. New Year’s Resolutions often fail because year-long commitments are really huge or are too vague. So for those who make resolutions, how can they stick to their plans? For those who have goals but aren’t calling them resolutions, how can they enjoy success? Take a couple of minutes and read the advice below.

First, take a look back on the past year. There have surely been highs, lows, and lessons learned. The review will encourage healing, inspire hope and self-improvement.  For example, hold up the positives. Recount every positive thing – a goal you accomplished, an honor you received, or a life change you succeeded at. Reviewing the positive can erase discouragement and give you momentum for the coming year.
Think about the blunders. No year is one hundred % perfect. Think about the moments that you lost your step or were tipped off balance. Now, take heart knowing that you picked yourself back up. Sometimes we make the most improvements during the rough spells. Don’t re-examine these incidents to beat yourself about the head and shoulders. When has that ever helped anything?
Write a letter to yourself. Yes, you read me “write.” Address this letter to the you in a year from now. Be honest with yourself and how you are currently doing. See what it is you would like to accomplish in a year. Tuck it away till next New Year’s Day.

We have looked at this past year. Now let’s look at how to make those resolutions work for you this year.

First, keep your goals small and specific. For example, “I want to lose 40 pounds this year.” That may be too big and daunting a goal. Why not change it to “I will lose four pounds in a month.” Less daunting and has a higher success rate, right?

The key is to break down your resolutions into manageable small goals and keep track of how you are doing.  So, for my goal to be nicer to everyone, I can set the goal to greet 4 new people a day whom I have not known before. Doable.

One way to remember how to approach your goals/resolutions is by the acronym SMART.
S – Specific. Define your goals well as this will help you focus your efforts.
M- Measurable. Measure your progress as you go along. This will inspire you to keep going.
A – Attainable. This is the part where you start small. Pick a goal that’s doable.
R – Realistic. Set a goal that is within your abilities and that you can complete. I could manage to walk the dog daily for a mile.
T – Time-bound. Set a target date for how long you need to achieve your goal.

I’d like to add an F and another T to that acronym, though it wouldn’t spell any word. F is for flexible. If you don’t achieve your goal, keep working on it next month or start over with a new objective. T is for treat. When you accomplish a goal, treat yourself to a pat on the back, a new book, a massage, etc. Don’t treat yourself with anything that is going to set you back on your accomplishments. As tasty as a New York style cheesecake would be, eating one to reward yourself will most definitely not help with your weight loss or healthy eating goal. You will know what works for you.

Have a great, prosperous, healthy and happy New Year, Everyone! (Maybe we can compare notes next year on how we did and have a virtual group hug.)

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soaps, bath salts, unique all occasion cards, and beanies.

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