A New Year (& New You)

03 Jan

by: Remie Longbrake | published: Jan 3, 2019

What I enjoy about the first of each New Year, is that it can be a renewed effort to focus and implement new ideas. Obviously the most common resolution would be to be fit, or to lose weight. If only it were so easy. In today's age with so many distractions it's ever increasingly difficult to stay on a committed path however.

It's believed that less then ten percent of resolutions end up successful. Of course it's not just physical activities that make the resolution list. Other common resolutions are to find a new job, save more money, get out debt, and eat healthier.

I believe that most people do not keep their resolutions because it's really hard. It's takes a commitment to do something new for one. It's also easy to become distracted with life's events, kids, families and other obligations.

To be more fit, it's likely you will either need to get up earlier or after work find time to work out. That's likely to take time away from either sleep or family time in the evenings. Neither of which will prove to be easy. There is also the membership cost and the time invested. Generally the new year is the best time to join a gym on a cost standpoint, as many gym's have introductory pricing. It's advisable to do your research on a gym. Get a tour if possible, along with all the amenities. You may have to sign a contract, but there may be money savings available. Many have showers, pools-sometimes heated, a sauna, specialized courts, walking area, along with free weights, machines and other items. Those with kids, there may be baby sitting available, which may be free. I would also ask about the classes offered. It's a great way to get it shape, meet people and hopefully stay committed together.

If goal is to find a new job, that will take considerable time to update a resume, research you're current value, job openings, research the companies, talk with your references. When you find something you will likely need to take time out of your current job to talk with the prospective employers for two or three interviews. Key is to stay positive through out the process. You are selling yourself, so put in your best effort and always smile!

If goal is to save money, first you should have a budget. Even with the budget, you'll need to plan for what your goal is. Say 5% of each paycheck, save back for savings. There may not be that much left after planning a budget, but it may be possible to cut back on eating out, or the grocery bill or even refinance a loan if the potential for savings is there. The power of compound interest is great, so it's definitely worthwhile to save sooner rather then later and save as much as possible.

The same with getting out of debt. It can certainly be more difficult to get out of debt then saving money. In this case, interest is working against you. It's crucial to understand not only to get into debt but to get out as soon as possible. It is inherently important to have a plan and to stay committed. Don't be embarresed to talk with anyone who may be able to help. The key is to be honest about the situation and get focused.

And finally in my example, if the resolution is to eat healthier, then it all starts one meal at a time. It's important to look at each meal and plan for that and to not lose sight to the big picture. Before you get to the grocery, think of the meal you would like to have. Write down all the ingredients on your list. There are also phone apps that can help with planning. Once at the store, generally the most healthy options are in the perimeter of the store. That is usually where the produce, vegetables, meats, and daily are located. It may be beneficial to talk with the doctor or a nutritionist, see where you are health wise. Have a consult and see what a good goal should be regarding your weight and your eating habits.

There are any number of good, valid resolutions that can be a proactive approach to a more fulfilling life. I would recommend making a year end goal for where you want to be regardless of the resolution. I would also advise making intermittent goals as little as bi-yearly, monthly, weekly or even daily. It's possible to track goals with pen and paper, apps on the phone, or a combination of both. What ever it takes to stay on track. I would also recommend to get someone you can be accountable to. Someone you trust and can confide in and who will not let you off the hook. It's nice that you can return the favor for them and help others stay committed to their goals. Being able to help each other is wonderful, and we're all more likely to follow our goals with a common bond. The more the goals are in front of you the more likely success will be. Keep in mind, the larger the goal the larger the commitment. It's important to sit and think about what you want to become, how much time it will consume and what the benefits are upon completion.

We all have the right to live the life we envision. Do not get discouraged. Your resolution is entirely possible with the right mindset. You can do this!

To a successful 2019!

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