“Nothing will work unless you do” – Maya Angelou

As we begin a new year, the common theme is New Year’s resolutions. Be it to eat less, exercise more, be more productive in certain areas, be more positive in one’s outlook, the list goes on and on. Far too often the resolution made in the beginning of January is a forgotten memory by the middle of February.

Even when in counseling, people want to feel better, but do not necessary go through the work of being better. They are often fooled into thinking they can’t when in actuality they can. Old concepts keep them doing the same old, same old. They never realize that they deserve and can be much more. People knowing they the can be much more than what they settle for requires only a bit of motivation. However, in order to keep motivation going, there are certain steps that may help.

Step 1: Write down as specific as possible what your overall long range goal is.

Step 2: Write down as specific as possible a short range, doable goal that has a specific end date. It should stretch you but not overwhelm you, while acing as a building block toward your ultimate goal.

Step 3: Where possible, you should develop a routine as to when you plan on implementing your goal.

Step 4: Remember, every new endeavor is met with initial setbacks. Learn from those setbacks by writing down what went wrong and what adjustments would be necessary to make in order achieve your goal.

Step 5: Focus on each small success that goes with each step accomplished. Reward yourself by praising yourself.

Step 6: Remember, in order to get something, you have to replace it with something else. In this situation, you’re giving up old worn out habits that no longer work for you with newly developed habits that will give you a greater sense of wellbeing.

Step 7: Finally, remember that “there is no free lunch”. In order to succeed in reaching your goal, wishing alone
will not make it so. Persevering in your work will.