Friday, January 4, 2013

Are You Keeping Your New Year's Resolutions?

According to a survey, forty-five percent of Americans usually make New Year’s resolutions. The most popular resolutions are (in order from number one): (1) lose weight; (2) get organized; (3) spend less and save more; (4) enjoy life; and (5) stay fit and healthy. 

Unfortunately, out of the 45%, seventy-five percent of the people only maintain their resolution(s) through the first week. Forty-six percent maintain their resolution(s) past the six month mark. To put those numbers into perspective, what that means is that in a population of 100 people, 45 people make resolutions, but only ~33 of those people keep the resolution past the first week. By the time six months roll by, only 20 people are still keeping to their resolutions. 

So, today, we are 4 days into the first week of 2013. If you made a resolution, how are you doing on keeping it? 

Unfortunately, follow-through is not very strong on the resolutions many of us make for the new year. Perhaps it is because many of the ones we make tend to deprive us of pleasurable activities, such as eating great food, drinking and shopping. When you feel deprived, it usually increases your desire for it ten-fold, and it eventually leads to a breaking of the resolution with an overindulgence of the so-called pleasure. 

Now, don’t get me wrong. I’m a big believer in setting goals and making resolutions to accomplish them. However, it’s important to create these with a positive mindset that rewards you for “good” behavior vs. a negative one that punishes you for “bad” behavior.  

I like Ellen Goodman’s take on it when she wrote the following. 

“We spend January 1 walking through our lives, room by room,
drawing up a list of work to be done, cracks to be patched. 
 Maybe this year, to balance the list, we ought to walk through the rooms of our lives ... not looking for flaws, but for potential.” 

In regard to dating ....
There are many who put off entering the dating arena because they feel they are too flawed, have too much baggage or have a negative body image. Are these excuses because they are afraid of rejection? For example, in regard to body image, do they subconsciously sabotage their weight loss efforts so they have an excuse to put off attending social events, etc. A favorite saying might be, “I just want to lose 10 pounds before I try to meet anyone.” Those 10 pounds never come off and can become an immovable obstacle unless the reason behind the avoidance is addressed. 

I’ve written a short book, Understanding Fitness and Weight Loss From A to Z, that speaks to 26 subjects and address some of these issues. Following is an excerpt on overcoming obstacles. 

SPECIAL OFFER: I’m offering a FREE download of the book from January 4 to January 6, 2013 via Amazon. It’s a Kindle book, but you don’t need a Kindle to read it. Just download a free reading app to access it on your computer, tablet, or phone. Links following. 

Click the book title name to access the free download of Understanding Fitness and Weight Loss From A to Z. 



OVERCOMING OBSTACLES: conquer, defeat, get the better of difficulties 

There is no such thing as a free lunch! In other words, every individual has his own obstacles to overcome in order to reach his goals. 

To an outsider, some may seem trivial and easy to resolve. However, you cannot truly understand another’s perspective until you have walked in his shoes. 

As you work towards overcoming your personal obstacles that are keeping you from the healthy and fit lifestyle you desire to live, there are two ways with which to confront them. In spiritual terms they are referred to as acting in object-referral or acting in self-referral. These represent two methods of dealing with your emotions and circumstances. 

Very often, a negative emotion is regarded as a weakness and dealt with in an inappropriate manner, such as the renunciation of responsibility for the creation of the circumstances that gave rise to the negativity. This is an example of acting in object-referral. 

However, if every time you experience negative emotions, you choose to learn and grow spiritually then you will be able to turn seemingly negative situations into positive experiences. This type of behavioral pattern is referred to as acting in self-referral

It is the choices you make on how to deal with your emotions that determine the outcome of the situations with which you are confronted. As Eleanor Roosevelt said: “In the long run, we shape our lives, and we shape ourselves. The process never ends until we die. And the choices we make are ultimately our responsibility.”

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