For a very long time, I have witnessed friends and family members commit to New Year’s Resolutions. And here’s what happens..90 percent of the time – NOTHING! So I’m going to share 4 secrets to successful New Year’s Resolutions.
We are creatures of habit. Time is needed to do our job, manage our family life, engage in hobbies, or just do the things we do. Unless a bolt of lightning hits you squarely in your head, you are going to do the same things this year as last year. Of course if something beyond your control causes an unforeseen change, i.e., you get fired, or heaven forbid, ill or as my wife is about to go through – multiple dental implants.
Secret #1 and I bet you relate to this
OK, Back in 1995, I will admit to plunking down some hard earned cash on a gym membership. I even convinced Kevin, my Best Man at my wedding, to join so I would have some extra motivation.
You know what happened? Life. My usual travel schedule began, and I quit dragging running shoes, shorts and a T-Shirt to the first 5 or 6 out of town visits. I realized I needed that room in my bag for pilfered toiletries, and gifts for my wife and sons.
I despise terms like “body-shaming” which I view as both senseless and hurtful. Face it, for most of the population it’s all in our genes. My former manager Joe, could eat pretty much anything he wanted and not put on a pound. My travel partner Tom and I would simply look at a brownie under a glass cover and gain 5 pounds.
Secret #2 – Forget the body and work the mind
So let’s put this energy into something useful. Instead of stressing over a few pounds – find a few minutes to be creative. The one thing that I have learned to do, and it wasn’t a New Year’s Resolution. is to practice a little meditation every day. There are no beads, special mats, soundproof chambers or special wardrobe. There is no need to drive and/or stress over parking. I wait for my wife and son to head off to work. After a bowl of Special K (with REAL MILK not SKIM), it’s time to in a comfy chair in my office. I’m aware of my surroundings and appreciate the things that pass over my senses. Thoughts cross my mind about my clients’ needs. I mentally note some things that I think will help drive their business. All the while I am – you’ll
excuse the expression – chill.
Secret #3 I didn’t believe it would be for me.
Clearly I am not about to recommend this as a New Year’s Resolution. However I did notice two magazines today (one was NJ Monthly, I forget the other) who’s cover headlines and photos were “Mindfulness”. Growing up as an Italian kid from Brooklyn, and then NJ, Mindfulness was not a topic ever discussed over spaghetti with clam sauce at home. Through gentle and periodic encouragement of my dear friend Jayne, I began to explore it, and found it a valuable resource. It’s why my company is called Mindful Marketing Solutions.
Secret #4 – Why does this matter?
It matters because you can feel good about doing something for yourself. There is no need of a club membership, a workout suit or perspiration. You’ll find yourself more in tune with your surroundings and you’ll discover clear, brilliant ideas you may have otherwise missed. You can do this anywhere – in a hotel, outside your home (weather permitting). To really feel it matter, to make a difference, just try someplace peaceful. Even living in NYC, there were peaceful places I knew I could go to when I needed some me time. I didn’t understand how mindfulness worked, but there are hideaways – parks, libraries, museums.
Bonus Secret! This is a new year, and a new chance.
2016 was in a word – a calamity. We lost talented musicians, artists, and performers. Prince, Bowie, Glenn Frey, the unimaginable twin loss of Debbie Reynolds and Carrie Fisher, Mohammed Ali, Gene Wilder, and so many more..
An election year which seems to have increased, at least initially, divisiveness in the US. Compounded by seemingly never-ending madness resulting in loss of dozens of innocent lives across the country and around the world.
Instead of focusing only on the tragedies and losses, create awareness in your mind, and let the positive energy provide you with leadership, confidence, purpose, goals, and successes. You will develop new ways to cope with challenges, and find the time to enjoy the gifts of family, friendships and new people. Let it bring you the peace of mind, the ability to cope, and the sense of what your goals can be in the remaining 11 months.
As a marketing professional, this approach gave me the confidence to go out on my own exactly one year ago. I’ve enjoyed new challenges, learned new approaches and delivered on my objectives. I also found time to enjoy my children and grandchildren, and made friends out of business colleagues. It’s all good.
Now go have a cookie, treat yourself to a latte, and try relaxing a little every day.
Shameless plug (not a secret)!
Did I mention that I provide marketing services including strategy and execution for small businesses? Yes! Affordable with specialties in legal vendors, so come visit us at www.mindfulms.com.
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