It’s that time of year! Many people are making their New Year’s resolutions, in hopes of making positive change in 2011. Are you one of them?

A few tips:

  • Make your resolution(s) attainable.
  • Make a concrete plan for attaining them.
  • Make few enough of them that you can give enough attention to each.
  • Give each of them a “why” — if you have solid reasons for wanting to adjust behaviors, it sometimes helps to keep them.
  • If you are looking to stop a habit, find something(s) to replace it with.
  • If you have a long-term goal, break it down into smaller goals.

I will make resolutions at New Year’s sometimes, but I’m of the mindset that if I want to change something, I’ll just do it then — no need to wait.

Things I’m kicking around in my head for 2011 (might be too many for me):

  • sugar-free for January — I’ve done this before (as part of a contest) and I felt much better (and it completely killed sweets cravings by the end of the month).
  • dairy-free for January — there are so many chemicals in milk (and therefore milk products) … So I’m going to see how a month without dairy goes. At this point, I eat cheese and occasionally ice cream or yogurt (frozen or otherwise), which shouldn’t be too difficult, but there are milk derivatives in a lot of stuff. That’s OK. It’ll help me move towards what I’d really like to do, which is eat more food the way it came from the earth. (Milk is also food for baby cows and wasn’t meant for human consumption…)
  • grow my training business — the nitty-gritty details of this will stay on the down-low for now, but they include landing some public speaking engagements, drawing in more training clients, running a successful boot camp, and writing an e-book.
  • get my 5K time back down to 30 minutes — because of funky post-chemo body issues, this might not actually be possible. Only one way to find out.
  • talk to an out-of-town friend or family member once a week — I still have a few good friends back east, and I have family all over. I am hit-or-miss with keeping in touch with folks, but if I can be in touch with at least one person each week, that will make connections stronger.
  • clean out the house — there is still too much stuff in my house. The goal is to have less. I have a fair amount of stuff that is sell-able, but I loathe shipping. Perhaps I’ll see what I can unload locally…
  • read more books — between teaching, starting/maintaining a business, starting/maintaining this blog, exercising regularly, plus the usual life events, I don’t always have time just to chill. I used to read a lot. I am going to scale back a bit in various arenas to have more time to read.

Problem with that list is that it’s long and is likely to spread me a little too thin trying to get it all done (which is ironic, since part of the list is to chill more). So I’m not sure.

Do you make resolutions? Do you keep them? What’s up for you in the coming year?


2 responses to this post.

  1. My goals/resolutions will be revealed on Monday- but I am still formulating them in my head.

    No sugar for a month would be very impressive. I assume you allow natural sugar? I also love dairy! I would last about 23 minutes if I had the same resolutions!

    Good luck and happy 2011!

    • No sugar = no refined or artifical sugar. So fruits are not off limits, but cookies, ice cream, most breakfast cereal, etc. are off-limits.

      I did this once before (as a result of strict calorie-counting and not having room in the daily diet for sugar or other junk). At the end of two months, I had control over food for the first time ever in my life. It was amazing.

      When I went through chemo, I ate whatever tasted good and would stay down (which was sometimes pretty limited), and the good food habits went out the window. I haven’t done what I need to do to really regain that control — though I’m not in bad shape now — and I decided it’s time. I’m sure I can do a month.

      Dairy, as it turns out, is harder. We went to my mother-in-law’s for dinner tonight. They ordered a pizza. So I had some and decided that my no-dairy resolution will be like my vegetarianism. When there are options, I will choose animal-free. But if there are not other options, I’m not going to go hungry on principle. I am OK with this amendment. I also expect that my mother-in-law’s house is the only place where the loophole will be taken advantage of. She has been really good about making sure I have vegetarian food to eat, and I’m not really comfortable asking her to do more. It’s all good.

      I also decided that completely dairy-free and sugar-free would be too much at once, so I’m foregoing direct dairy products (cheese, ice cream, yogurt, milk chocolate) but not worry about ingredients. For example, the waffles we made had milk in the mix. Again, I’m OK with this amendment…

      Looking forward to seeing what you decide on! Happy 2011 to you, too!

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