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It happens to all of us, doesn’t it? We start out the new year with the best of intentions: “I’m going to exercise and eat better!” “I’m going to get more sleep!” “I’m going to learn another language!” But by week 3 or 4, we start to lose steam. Then, February hits and the resolutions of the month before begin to fade. By mid-February, most people have given up their resolutions and carry on as normal…

It doesn’t have to be that way! You CAN keep your resolutions; you CAN make permanent life changes this coming year. How? Here are four steps to set you up for success, but ultimately it all boils down to you. Do you want to succeed? Do you want to make a long-term difference? Then you can, and you will. Let’s get started…

1. Don’t bite off more than you can chew

You might have lofty goals (and I’d certainly like you to achieve them!), but it is crucial to be realistic. Don’t resolve to go to the gym every day, only eat fruits and vegetables, and cut out television entirely if you don’t think those goals are sustainable. Don’t aim to go “all out” for a month, and then crash back into your old habits. It’s much better to work towards something (i.e. start by going to the gym twice a week, and then increase your attendance as the year goes on) then to plunge in and back out again.

2. Break your goal into twelve parts

A year may seem like a long time, but a month goes by in the blink of an eye. If you have a substantial goal for the new year, break your goal into smaller pieces so that you feel a sense of accomplishment each month. For instance, if you’d like to write a book this year, make a plan like this:

January: Complete book outline and attend one writing class

February: Write chapter one; attend one writing class

March: Write chapter two


Don’t forget to reward yourself in some small way after you achieve your monthly goal!

3. Hold yourself accountable

There are a few ways to check in on your goal progress. One effective method that I’ve used is to enlist the help of an “accountability partner.” This is a person who will check in on you every once in a while and make sure you’re on track. This could be a close friend, your mother, a co-worker, etc.–someone who isn’t afraid to keep you on the ball. In turn, you can offer to be their accountability partner.

If you’re a more private person and would prefer to tackle your resolution solo, consider setting up a series of notifications in your Google calendar, iCalendar, or whatever program you prefer. Create an event that says something like, “Have you completed X this week? Keep going!” and set a notification to remind you of the “event.” These regular check-ins will help keep your resolution top-of-mind. Just be sure they aren’t so frequent that you’ll simply delete them without a second glance.

4. Make your game plan

Really, this should be step number one, but I’m closing the list with this one so that it’s the first thing you do when you finish reading this post. MAKE A GAME PLAN. Don’t go into the new year with a vague resolution and no idea how you’ll achieve it. Take the time to sit and reflect about your goal. Ask yourself why you want to make a positive change in your life and then ask yourself how you are going to make that change. The how is important. This is where all the action comes into play. How will you reach your goal this year? What steps will you take? How will you accomplish those steps. Only by really thinking about the logistics of your resolution will you be able to achieve it successfully. By crafting a game plan (and posting it somewhere that you can see if every day), you’ll start to turn a vague wish into a reality.

Start today! The new year is coming up and I’d love for you to dive into it with confidence, knowing that you have the tools to achieve great things this year.

If you’d like additional help creating a road map for this year, please give me a call anytime and we can discuss your strategy.


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This past year was astronomically rare. We experienced two blue moons (a full moon twice in one month) in the same year. The next blue moon will not occur until 2018. When you think about this spectacular and rare phenomenon, you can relate it to your own life: What are you doing that is as bold and exceptional as a blue moon? What have you accomplished this past year that goes above and beyond the norm?

Maybe you’re thinking to yourself: “Gee, I’m not sure I’ve done anything too out-of-the-ordinary this year.”  If that’s the case, don’t worry! You still have an entire quarter to accomplish some of your goals and make some extraordinary changes. Here are some tips for making the rest of the year shine:

  1. Re-focus your goals. Do you remember what your New Year’s resolutions were for this year? Did you have a list of things that you wanted to accomplish in 2015? If your list seems daunting right now, take a step back. Think about what you can realistically get done in the next few months and focus your energy on those items. Do NOT beat yourself up over things you can’t accomplish this year. That kind of negative thinking will only weigh on your shoulders as you attempt to refocus your goals.
  2. Make goals! On the flip side, if you didn’t really have any concrete goals this year, it’s not too late to make them. Spend a few quiet minutes jotting down ideas for what you’d like to accomplish in the next three months. Include work-related items as well as non-work items. Do you want to reorganize your closet? Get in better shape? Find two new clients? Master social media? Spend more time with your family? Once you’ve decided on a couple goals, outline a plan on how to reach them.
  3. Find an accountability partner. Sure, you might have good intentions when you set out to achieve your goals, but you might lose steam as the weather gets chillier and the nights longer (I know I do!). That’s where your accountability partner comes in. Find a close friend or family member who is willing to push you to achieve your goals. They should check in regularly to see how you’re doing. And hey, they might even want to participate in end-of-the-year goal setting!
  4. Don’t let obstacles stop your momentum. Sure, life happens. You might, for whatever reason, get derailed from your goals. Get back on the tracks and keep moving! Even if that means down-sizing your goal into something a little more manageable, that’s okay. This is a test in adaptability and mental agility. Do you have what it takes to compartmentalize your road blocks and focus on the bigger picture? I’m sure you do. If you need a little assistance in overcoming obstacles, please do not hesitate to reach out to me for guidance.

Good luck in the final quarter!

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