From Resolutions to a Lifestyle Change

blossomingbutterfly

I had the awesome opportunity to be on Vanessa Bell Calloway’s show, “That’s So Very Vanessa,” ( http://www.blogtalkradio.com/vanessabellcalloway/2013/12/29/a-new-year-a-new-you) where we discussed how to stick to New Year Resolutions. What follows is a comprehensive write-up outlining how you can go from making resolutions to implementing a lasting lifestyle change!

 

Around this time every year, we are inundated with those who resolve to make some life-altering changes with the incoming of the New Year and without fail; the resolutions become obsolete by the end of February. Any change worth making must be accompanied by a shift in one’s lifestyle, becoming a natural occurrence of your everyday routine. The following outlines the steps to take if you are serious about making positive changes in your life.

Before embarking on what items on which you need to improve, you must first ask yourself why you want to make the change and the answers to the questions must be substantial and not just surface, shallow reasons.  Asking yourself why allows you to set the intention that serves as the foundation on which your lifestyle change will be grounded.

  1. Write down your “why” and decide that nothing and no one will stop you from accomplishing this goal.

2.  Write down your big, overall long-term goals. These are the types of things that      will take you a significant amount of time to complete.

3.  Write down the small, short-term goals that will guide you in executing your            long-term goals (each goal you set must have a bigger purpose).

4.  Write out your daily plan/schedule. Outline what you will do each day that will      aide you in fulfilling your life’s goals. Make sure the items on this list are            reasonable and realistic.

~There is power in writing, as it allows you to become personally invested in the process, in addition to serving as an accountability tool.  It also serves as a sense of pride as you complete each item on your list. Remain flexible and know that you can always make changes to your lists as needed. Make sure your goals and plan are placed in a prominent place in your home and/or work so that you can see them each day.~

5.   Have a contingency plan. Expect obstacles and have a plan in place to       overcome them. Having a plan will stop you from giving up whenever a setback occurs. Success is the result of conquering your obstacles.

6.   Confront your demons. Many times we give up on goals because we don’t want to face the thoughts that have held us back. Our thoughts have been programmed within us and are manifested through our actions by way of poor decision making. Therefore, our actions have created our unfavorable circumstances. When you’ve faced your short comings, it’s important to figure why and from where you developed this series of beliefs. Typically they come from our childhood, family, friends, or have developed from a traumatic experience or a series of repeated disappointments in life. Confronting, acknowledging and embracing your demons is the first step in conquering them. Be honest with yourself during this process.

7.   Replace your demons. Put positive thoughts where the negative ones exist. Forgive yourself and others of everything bad that has happened to you. Forgiveness frees you and releases you from the bondage that has held you back. Instead of running away from the things and people that have hurt you, run toward the things you want to leave as your legacy.

8.  Surround yourself with people who have a similar mind set and want the same things out of life as you. Those who are fully committed to themselves and their success and have a healthy dose of discipline will be a great support system for you.

9.   Invest in professional help. It’s healthy to have unbiased, trained help-someone who has no preconceived notions of you and is there solely to help you achieve all you desire out of life. Companies invest in their employees to improve so they can better fulfill their roles, with a goal of increasing the business’ bottom line. Why not take the time to invest in your personal brand, making improvements that will help your personal bottom line?

10.   Put a reward system in place. Affirming yourself daily will empower you to continue to work towards your goals in life. As you accomplish each task, reward yourself with something you enjoy doing.

 

Giving in to the automatic habit of making New Year’s resolution without fully acknowledging that real, significant change is a process that occurs over time will set you up for failure. If you are serious about improving, commit to making a lifestyle change, so that from month to month and year to year you are merely amending your goals lists.   Remember to always be kind to yourself, as each day is an opportunity to get it right. Don’t give up on yourself because you deserve the very best!

 

Sincerely,

Shanika

 

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I’m the Grinch

My paternal grandparents had 3 children: my dad (the eldest) and 2 girls. Growing up, I spent holidays with my paternals and as a result, those experiences shaped my definition of “the holidays,” which included gigantic family dinners (that I helped prepared when I became old enough and had permission to enter my grandmother’s kitchen), lots of love, laughter, and life!

This time of year was something I always looked forward to as a child.

Life changed and God decided to take the youngest girl in 2007, my dad in 2008, and my grandmother in 2009. As you can probably imagine, things are much different, and as a result; I am not in a festive mood this year. But it’s 2013, right???

For reasons I won’t list publicly, this holiday season is one of the toughest I’ve experienced since 2009 to the point where I really just want to go to sleep and not awake until January 2, 2014.

Yes, I have my daughter, the light of my life, but as far as she’s concerned; all of her days are filled with love, laughter, and life, as she is oblivious to what Christmas is because she experiences blessings daily. Children as young as she have Christmas everyday! 🙂

I’ve been pretty emotional today and just wanted to post to say: those damn presents do not matter. I’m not speaking to what you can or can’t afford. I’m speaking to the true spirit and meaning of Christmas: the giving of unconditional love, the traditions, the joke telling, sitting around watching the parades and games, spending time with the people who you love the most.

Those of us engrossed in the the grieving process (which lasts a lifetime) would return every gift to have our loved ones back.

Those who have family members who are deployed would give up those stupid, cheesy decked halls to be in the presence of their loved ones.

Those who are unable to travel home because of work and/or obligations would love to take for granted the feast that’s prepared. And to be able to eat it with their family.

Those who are homeless don’t really care about having the latest gadgets that will soon be forgotten next month when the next new thing comes out.

Think about that when you’re consumed with consumerism. Materials don’t matter, but moments do.

While I am a self-proclaimed grinch (and rightfully so, in my opinion); I’m thankful I still remember the reason for the season.

Sending my prayers, love, and hugs to everyone out there who can relate.

 

Shanika

thegrinch