5 ¾ ways to Strive and Survive This Year

Many people make New Year’s resolutions that are difficult to achieve. Oftentimes the resolution is too vague (I want to lose weight) or so unattainable (I will run a marathon) that they are abandoned very quickly. Instead of setting unrealistic goals, incorporate methodologies into your life that encompass the personal side as well as being instrumental in the workplace and relationships with others.

#1 – energy drainers – keep a small notebook or piece of paper in your pocket for a week. Write down each time you feel being drained. Also identify your timewasters (e.g. time spent playing computer games, etc.) At the end of the week, calculate this total time. By doing this, you can re-evaluate how to put this time to better use.

#2 – watch your words – It has been a challenge in the past year to think positive, however, life is a cycle and good times will be here again soon. By using uplifting words, the energy you create will manifest itself onto others. Also try to picture your words as colors. Warm colors like yellow and orange can be turned into words such as sunny, opportunity and pleasant and will bring about a healthier attitude and perspective.

#3 – diversify – Think about the celebrities that stand out from the others. How have they done that? The answer is that they have successfully “tweaked” their persona several times over the course of their career. You can achieve similar results. Due to work, family considerations and other obligations, most people do not have the time, money or desire to pursue an advanced degree or CPA. Instead consider a certification program, a class at a community college or volunteer for programs like Habitat for Humanity where you can learn a new skill. By doing this, you will make new contacts as well as have the satisfaction of succeeding in trying something new. If you are in the job market, employers favor candidates who continuously expand their repertoire of skills.

#4 – visualize – The book, The Secret, discusses the law of attraction and how a positive attitude can project itself onto others and the universe. To be truly effective, you have to take it one step farther. Try this exercise – sitting quietly, picture yourself six months from now. Where are you? What are you doing? Are you in a new job, on vacation or having quality family time? Studies have proven that if you can visualize a goal, you have a better likelihood of achieving it.

#5 – enjoy the journey – In our fast paced society, most people want to get to their destination/goal/completion of a project. Try instead to stay in the present and really experience each step along the way. Patience is key which more most (including myself) can be most difficult to practice. Savor each step and reflect before moving onto the next phase.

#3/4 – breathe – Ideally this should be tip #6. Unless you are a true yoga enthusiast and/or meditate regularly, many people do not know how to breathe properly. Sitting with your spine upright in a comfortable chair, take a deep breath, hold it for a few seconds and let it out slowly. Try this several times and focus only on the breath and clear your mind of all other thoughts. It has been proven that this type of breathing can lower your blood pressure and its meditative qualities can make you think clearer.