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A "New Take" on New Years Resolutions for 2009

by Barbara Jennings, CRS/CSS

Got any resolutions in mind for next year? Do you have the resolve to make them a reality? Yeah, it’s another year. I wonder where this year went?  Or should I say, did the last one GROW at all?
  • Did you accomplish all you wanted to accomplish?
  • Make your numbers or quota or fall backwards?
  • Achieve your goals no matter how small?
  • Bank your money and save anything?
  • Did you lose the weight, gain weight, stay the same?
  • Stop smoking, stop drinking alcohol, stop eating sweets?
  • Spend more time with the family or exercise more?
  • Read that book or go on that trip?

Well it’s now a NEW YEAR (almost) so you gotta throw away old goals.

This may sound strange, but I say: Throw away your “typical resolutions.” They rarely pan out anyway, don't you agree? Resolutions are little more than vague statements to make you feel better in the short term and then they make you feel guilty in the long term when you don't achieve them.

New Year’s resolutions are a way of telling yourself that there’s something you want to achieve. But do they become reality? Only you know for sure.

A Better Way

A better way to look at resolutions is to determine why you’re making them in the first place, and create personal resolve to change the root cause.

Here are two hard questions you need to ask yourself as you make this year’s obligatory resolutions: 1. Why are you making this resolution? 2. What are you willing to do differently that will make this resolution a reality?

For example, if your resolution is “lose weight” or “lose 20 pounds” (which it probably is - at least it is for me), maybe we should look to the root cause:

  • I eat the wrong foods
  • I eat on the run
  • I eat too much fast food
  • I eat late at night
  • My diet has too much soda or chips
  • I eat too much food at one sitting
  • I eat all day long
  • I never exercise
…and create specific personal resolves from there. Here are a few specific resolves:

  • I will cut out all donuts.
  • I will not drink soda for six months.
  • I will only eat fast food on Wednesday.
  • I will go to the gym Monday, Wednesday, and Saturday.

I hate to rain on your New Year’s Day parade, but we have an opportunity to achieve what we have resolved, if we will just be real with ourselves, and make the resolve statements in the form of SPECIFIC personal actions and SPECIFIC personal achievements.

Getting Specific

The more specific we can make them, the more likely we are to make them happen. Tell yourself EXACTLY what you intend to do. Tell yourself EXACTLY what you will do or are willing to do. And you’ll have a 99% better chance of achieving. That's what I'm going to do.

You’ve heard the old saying, “Where there’s a will there’s a way.” I even wrote a book years ago as a "take off" on that saying.

What it means is: first you better have the will. Will is the root word of willing. And willing is the trigger for achievement. If you are not willing to do, and you do not intend to do, then resolution, resolve, or goal means nothing – or better stated, it will be your resolution AGAIN next year.

And so the key questions behind your potential to achieve anything you want to achieve this year are:

  • What are you willing to do?
  • What are you willing to change?
  • What are you willing to become better at?
  • What are you willing to sacrifice or let go of?
  • Are you willing to work harder or not?
  • Are you willing to get up earlier in order to give yourself more achievement time or are you going to continue sleeping in?
  • And what is it worth to you once it’s achieved?

REALITY: Your willingness creates your will.

YOUR REALITY: Resolve to be more willing.

Happy New Year.


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Barbara's newest book is finally done and set to go to the printer. While everyone else is busy teaching the standard stuff about starting a business, Barbara ia busy looking ahead and seeing where training has yet to go. While the world focuses on getting a project, Barbara concerns herself with exploring the subject of making sure you get paid. Because, after all, landing the project is only half the battle. And as the economy toughens, more and more people might be tempted to hire a home stager but resist paying them when all is said and done. So to make sure you're not left scrambling to get your money, this is a must read. More details:
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Barbara Jennings is the best selling author in the home staging and interior redesign industries. She has written 13 books and several ebooks, has developed the most comprehensive professional courses, is director of the Academy of Staging and Redesign, and hosts the largest professional directory on the internet of home stagers, interior redesigners and art consultants.