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Do you know how many New Year’s resolutions people actually succeed at keeping? Practically none. I’ve never been a believer in resolutions. I think you should just do it now.

What do you think the reason is that we do not keep our New Year’s resolutions?

Two reasons, the main one is our self-defeating stories, and two, habits that we’ve held for years. One of my favorite books on this topic is "The Power of Habit" by Charles Duhigg.

Next, let’s look at some of what Isaiah Hankel has to say on the power of our self-stories, he’s just released a new book, "The Science of Intelligent Achievement: How Smart People Focus, Create and Grow Their Way to Success" (Capstone 2018). One of my favorite quotes from Mr. Hankel is: "In order to change your big story, you have to change the little stories."

You know which stories don’t you? Have you ever heard yourself say any of these:

  • I’ll never be thin because I’ve been overweight for 16 yeas now.
  • It’s more important that I’m available for him now, I’ll concentrate on me later.
  • I hate myself, I hate my body. I’m so stupid.

By telling yourself these negative stories, or even thinking them, you give yourself the freedom to abuse yourself and remain in toxic relationships, eat fattening food and keep drinking or smoking. Why should you bother, you always fail anyway don’t you?

See what I mean… if you refuse to change those stories, then I suggest you not make any resolutions for 2018 because you’re destined for failure, then you will feel even more badly about yourself.

But if you’re ready and willing to dispense with the negative thinking, and forgive your past failures, then let Jan. 1 be your day for change! Two years ago, I decided I’d declutter my home a little bit more. I like things neat and organized. If you too want to organize your home, read this,“The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up” by Marie Kondo.

We don’t actually overcome, or break a bad habit. We merely replace it with another one. And amazingly enough, those new, healthy habits become ingrained in our behavior in about three weeks, so don’t give up too soon. Set reasonable goals for yourself though. Remember, nobody’s perfect, and if they are, they’ve been photoshopped!

So this Jan. 1, sit down and write a list of the negative thoughts that make up the mental chatter in your mind. Write all of them on paper or type and print your list. Vow to never say these words again and burn them. Literally, turn them to ash. Then create a vision board using pictures that you cut out of magazines to represent all the wonderful things you’d like to create in your life. Dreams can come true if you believe that they can. Cheers to a happy, healthy New Year.

Suzy Cohen can be reached at www.SuzyCohen.com

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