By now everyone has probably made their New Year’s resolutions with hopes of actually accomplishing what they have resolved to accomplish.
I find it interesting that only 8 percent of people who make New Year’s resolutions actually keep them. So what happened to the other 92 percent? Thinking about this made me wonder: Do we make unrealistic resolutions? Do we fall into complacency? Do we make excuses for lack of discipline?
Let’s examine some of the top resolutions people make every year to get a better idea:
1. Lose weight.
2. Get organized.
3. Spend less money.
4. Save more money.
5. Enjoy life
6. Stay fit and healthy.
7. Find out something exciting.
8. Quit smoking.
9. Help others find their dreams.
10. Fall in love.
11. Find more time for family.
From this list we can see people overall have a desire to be the best they can be and help others do the same, understanding this adds to the value of enjoying life. I have to wonder though, with such positive resolutions why do these natural tendencies seem so hard to achieve. Have you ever noticed the hardest things to do bring the most satisfaction when you accomplish them?
I also find it interesting that 25 percent more people in their 20s than in their 50s who make resolutions actually keep them. I guess the saying might be true to some extent, “You can’t teach an old dog new tricks.” I say this with a smile, because I’m a lot closer to the 50 mark than 20.
Unfortunately, many have given up on even making resolutions as seen by the fact that only 45 percent do continue to make them. For many, resolutions become more about a hope than a happening. Simply said, many have quit hoping.
What can you do to improve your chances of accomplishing those New Year’s resolutions in 2014? I’ve compiled a list of 10 tips to a better you in 2014:
1. Look for the positive in all situations, especially when it’s like looking for a needle in a haystack. This builds perseverance, which is linked to success.
2. Think before you speak, even if it means taking a 15-minute time out to evaluate the situation. It’s simply said, but most of us don’t exercise this principle, which generally enlarges our problems.
3. Do at least one kind deed for someone each day. Doing for others takes your focus off your challenges and builds a positive mindset.
4. Put yourself on a monthly budget. Seeing where you spend your money helps you know where you need to save. At the end of the year, when Christmas approaches, you’ll find you actually are looking forward to it.
5. Make time to exercise daily. Notice I said, “make.” Yes, you will have to make yourself do this. Speaking from someone who hates to exercise, I can tell you I started doing this a few years ago and the back and neck issues I had from a past car accident where reduced to almost zero as I strengthened my body. In just walking alone, you will find improved circulation, strength and energy, making you feel years younger. Start slow, stay with it but don’t stop.
6. Never go to bed with a disorderly house. Waking up to disorder starts each day off with low expectations that are hard to overcome.
7. Take up a hobby. Our lives are meant to enjoy, not just survive. Anything that is not mandatory for existence and out of your normal routine that doesn’t harm you is necessary for mental health and would be a good choice.
8. Let go of the past. Don’t spend your life talking about all the past problems. As another note, don’t only talk about the past joys. Create joy in your present and move forward in expectancy. No one ever moved forward looking backwards.
9. Give someone a compliment at least once a day. Everyone experiences challenge. There is a great deficiency in praise among people. Expecting without blessing has been the standard for far too long. A kind and honest compliment can brighten up the most challenged day.
10. Spend time each day in prayer and Bible reading. This should have actually been at the top of the list. If we want to discover hope, happening, excitement, love, success and order, the best place to look is where it all comes to light. The key to finding all these things and fulfilling our resolutions starts here. This is the guide to fresh ideas and uncovered victories.
On Jan. 15 from noon until 1 p.m., I will present the program, “Couponing in 2014,” at Greenhouse Ministries in Murfreesboro.
On Jan. 18 at 9 a.m., I will present the program, “Budgeting Your Way to Financial Freedom with Coupons,” at Operation Stand Down in Nashville.
Also on Jan. 18 from 2-4 p.m., I will present the program, “Couponing in 2014,” at the Shelbyville Times Gazette in Shelbyville.
On Jan. 25 from 9 a.m. until 3 p.m., I will be at the Nashville Women Empowerment Workshop at the Entrepreneur Center in Nashville. For more information, visit nashvillewomensempowerment.com.
Ann Haney is homeschool mother of 17-plus years to six children (four entrepreneurs), CEO of Aaron Publishing, founder of Ann Haney Ministries and Living In Abundance, nationwide motivational speaker, coupon specialist and author of 18 published products, including her book, “Exploding Into Successful Entrepreneurship.” Contact Ann at firstname.lastname@example.org to schedule a speaking engagement and view her website at annhaney.com for more information.