Entries categorized "I Resolve To . . . 2008"

I Resolve To™ . . . Celebrate Christmas! - Day 360

Wishing you a wonderful Christmas and a fabulous New Year folks.  It looks like it's going to be a white Christmas from Coast to Coast in the United States - here's hoping that holiday travelers make it to their destinations in one piece and in time to celebrate Christmas with family!  I love the holiday season and all the joys that it brings.  It's a wonderful time of the year to count blessings and show gratitude for all that we have and all that we are - and I am certainly doing that today. 

I also received some wonderful news recently from one of my favorite online communities - Gather.Com - their editors have named me one of their Resolution Dream Team Experts for the New Year.  It's a true honor and a wonderful 'reward'for all the hard work that I have put in here at IResolveTo.Com.  I count my Gather.Com opportunity among my blessings for 2008 and I'm looking forward to communicating with the Gather.Com community in 2009.  They're wonderful folks!  Merry Christmas and have a Wonderful New Year . . .

Remember:  I Resolve To . . . Achieve My New Year Resolutions, One Resolution, One Day At A Time For One Year.  It's your choice.  Do it today. Turn your resolution into reality in five simple, common sense steps:  Dare To Dream, Decide, Define, Develop A Plan, and Do It Daily. Make your resolution a permanent Lifetime Resolution, something that's with you for good!  Above all, Be A Resolutionista, someone who makes resolutions, keeps resolutions, and enjoys the journey!  Let's Go For It!

Need More Inspiration?  Wear Your Resolution!  Make Every Day New Year's Day.  Make Every Day Count.  Visit my resolution shop by clicking this link:  http://www.cafepress.com/iresolveto             

Kim M. Simpson - December 25, 2008
Copyright ©
I Resolve To™ . . . * All Rights Reserved


I Resolve To™ . . . Defuse New Year Resolution Landmines!

New Year resolutions don't magically transform from nebulous ideas to fast and firm results overnight.  They don't become 'real' without careful forethought, clarity of purpose, a common sense system for planning and doing, and lots of elbow grease.  If you are noodling some changes that you would love to make, or perhaps a dream that you passionately want to pursue, consider this affirmation as a starting point:  I Resolve To . . . Achieve My New Year Resolutions, One Resolution, One Day At A Time For One Year. 

Instead of making a long 'tired' list of negative things that you feel obligated to change in your life - why not change the paradigm, think outside the box, and be willing to color outside the lines.  Make just one positive resolution, or pursue one positive theme, which will enable you to learn new things, IResolveToAchieve offer challenge and excitement, and bring happiness, joy and reward to your life.  Make a promise to yourself to pursue one resolution 'just for you' in the New Year.  If you are not sure what you want to 'resolve', do some brainstorming and create a Lifetime Resolution List consisting of at least 100 things that you would love to do, be, see, feel, experience, create, achieve, learn, try, change, or have in your life.  As you brainstorm, ask yourself, if you had all the time, skills, knowledge, money, opportunity, and support in the world, what would you do?  No holds barred.  List everything large and small, significant and insignificant, realistic, or seemingly unrealistic.  This is an exercise in dreaming large, daring to dream the impossible dream, and opening one's mind to all the wonderful possibilities. 

Next choose just one large dream ,or theme from your list that truly excites and inspires you - and pursue it with patience, passion and persistence in the coming year.  If you need help visualizing a process to launch your effort, wrap your arms around this easy to understand formula:  Cherished Dream + Specific One Sentence Resolution + Daily Goals = Success, Achievement & Reward.  My personal favorite Lifetime Resolution is to exercise regularly for good health and happiness:  I Resolve To . . . Exercise for at least  30-minutes daily by walking, biking, swimming, stretching, doing Yoga, weight training, or playing tennis, so that I can maintain my ideal weight (i.e. 125 pounds), be fit and toned (i.e. look good in my clothes, and feel good about myself), be healthy (i.e. lower my cholesterol and blood pressure), and maintain a good mood and positive outlook.

If you're ready to roll your sleeves up and build a plan - the I Resolve To . . . System For Success is useful for mapping virtually any resolution.  The 'Do's' consist of five simple steps for planning and implementing resolutions:  Dare To Dream, Decide, Define, Develop A Plan, And Do It Daily.  The 'Don'ts' include five common sense strategies that can help you to avoid obstacles and landmines:  Procrastinate, Give In To Fear of Success Or Failure, Get Discouraged, Grow Bored & Weary, Or Give Up.  Armed with a Lifetime Resolution List, the I Resolve To . . . Formula and I Resolve To . . . System For Success, you are ready to get moving.  Before you begin brainstorming, planning and plotting for the New Year, pay close attention to the following 'Resolution Killers' . . . that way you can render them harmless before they stall your progress.

25 New Year Resolution Landmines:

  1. Resolution is too vague.  Solution:  Create a specific one-sentence resolution that includes the 'how, what & why' of achieving your resolution.
  2. Too many resolutions leading to overwhelm and lack of focus.  Solution:  Make one major, life-altering resolution at a time.
  3. Wrong resolution chosen with no thought or analysis.   Solution:  Do your homework and choose one resolution that evokes passion and interest. 
  4. Unrealistic expectations - the bar for achievement is set way to high.  Solution:  Don't bite off more than you can chew, take small steps.
  5. Unrealistic tasks.  Solution:  Take one small step - one daily goal - one day at a time; forget multi-tasking and overniight results. 
  6. No true desire, commitment, or passion for your resolution.  Solution:  Desire is key. 
  7. No research into what is required to achieve the resolution.  Solution:  Educate yourself about the 'who, what, when, where & why' of achievement. 
  8. No long and short-range plan.  Solution:  Build weekly and monthly plans; review and revise goals daily. 
  9. No Timeline and no deadlines for completing daily tasks.   Solution:  Build realistic timelines and set deadlines.
  10. No Daily Resolution Diary, journal, or written record.  Solution:  Record your daily journey. 
  11. No motivation and follow through.  Solution:  Keep your eye on the prize and reward yourself, often, for accomplishments. 
  12. No method of measuring progress, determining success, giving reward.  Solution:  Set specific daily tasks, record progress, and review weekly. 
  13. No accountability.  Solution:  A journal, timeline, buddy, family support, and a mentor can help keep you on track. 
  14. No organization.  Solution:  Build a written plan, and timeline with deadlines that will create 'structure' for daily tasks. 
  15. No discipline.  Solution:  Show up every day whether you want to, or not.   
  16. No commitment to daily action.  Solution:  Showing up every day helps make your resolution a permanent (not fleeting) 'daily habit'. 
  17. No buddies to work with and share ideas.  Solution:  Make time to cultivate buddies who share your vision and enthusiasm.
  18. No mentor, clubs, or classes to provide inspiration and useful information and support.  Solution:  Join a club, take a class and Identify a mentor. 
  19. No family support.  Solution:  Find support from friends, colleagues and mentors; share your journey with like-minded souls. 
  20. Feelings of being overwhelmed due to no planning.  Solution:  Build a plan first, then take one small step at a time, one day at a time. 
  21. Procrastination.  Solution:  Get moving - 'just do it' - start with the easy tasks first and build momentum toward the tougher tasks. 
  22. Fear of success.  Solution:  "Yes", life will change as you make progress toward achieving your dream - embrace change and fear that comes with it. 
  23. Fear of failure.  Solution:  Embrace failure, learn from your mistakes, and move forward  (failing isn't the end of the world). 
  24. Inability to let go of past failures and mistakes, learn lessons and move forward.   Solution:  Learn your lessons, let the failures go, and move on. 
  25. Failure to celebrate and build on each success.  Solution:  Celebrate your accomplishments & reap the rewards - success breeds success.

Remember:  I Resolve To . . . Achieve My New Year Resolutions, One Resolution, One Day At A Time For One Year.  It's your choice.  Do it today. Turn your resolution into reality in five simple, common sense steps:  Dare To Dream, Decide, Define, Develop A Plan, and Do It Daily. Make your resolution a permanent Lifetime Resolution, something that's with you for good!  Above all, Be A Resolutionista, someone who makes resolutions, keeps resolutions, and enjoys the journey!  Let's Go For It!

Need More Inspiration?  Wear Your Resolution!  Make Every Day New Year's Day.  Make Every Day Count.  Visit my resolution shop by clicking this link:  http://www.cafepress.com/iresolveto             

Kim M. Simpson - December 24, 2008
Copyright ©
I Resolve To™ . . . * All Rights Reserved


I Resolve To™ . . . Craft A Lifetime Resolution List!

If you could craft your own 'Life Story' what would you write?  On January 1, each one of us is given a I Resolve To Reach gift, a clean slate, a new page on which we can begin to write the next chapter in our lives. So, what will it be?  Will life in 2009 be dominated by the personal and professional 'In Box'?  Will our days be driven by all the 'stuff', all the many things that the universe throws at us each day, the things over which we can exert minimal control, but are important responsibilities nonetheless.

A better, more proactive alternative is to make a firm decision today to pursue a positive dream, resolution and daily goals that bring joy, fulfillment and reward.  The 'In Box' will continue to overflow and tasks will be tackled one by one, but we also can work to shape and mold our dreams, resolutions and daily goals, if we so choose.

Why not pursue a dream, resolution and daily goals with passion, patience and persistence in the New Year?  Why not be courageous, strong and committed?  The start of a new year is a wonderful opportunity - one of 365 opportunities - to seize the day and put an end to the 'Someday, Someday, Someday Syndrome'.  It is time to 'go for it'!   If you are hungry for positive change and achievement in your life, but uncertain how to begin, or on which resolution to focus - start by doing a bit of daydreaming.  Put on your thinking cap and mull your options.  One of my favorite creative exercises is to hit my favorite coffee house with my journal in hand, and these questions:

  1. What are the 100 things that I would love to do, be, see, feel, experience, create, achieve, learn, try, change, or have in my life . . . more than anything in this world?  What 100 things would enable me to write a rewarding, joyful life story full of happiness and achievement?  Every New Year I ponder this question, and I periodically review and update my list throughout the the year.  The list becomes a living document that changes over time, as I learn and grow, experience highs and lows, victories and defeats.  Crossing things off the list and adding others is part of the growth process - part of life and all the changes that it brings day-to-day.  So, don't worry if your list gets messy.  What is important is that you start today.  Create your own Lifetime Resolution List.  You have nothing to lose and everything to gain.  Even if you only partially achieve your cherished dreams - your resolutions - you will be a lot farther along in your life story, than if you didn't try at all. 
  2. As you create your list, ponder this question as well:  If I had all the time, skills, knowledge, money, opportunity, and support in the world, what would I do?  No holds barred.  List everything large and small, significant and insignificant, realistic, or seemingly unrealistic.  This is an exercise in dreaming large, daring to dream the impossible dream, and opening one's mind to all the wonderful possibilities.  Below, I provide a snapshot, in no particular order, of things that I strive to incorporate into my daily life, things that I want to do (or in many cases already do, as Lifetime Resolutions) and things that I want to be, see, feel, experience, create, achieve, learn, try, change, or have  in days, months and years to come . . . It isn't exhaustive and doesn't include a complete listing of accomplishments (though I strongly urge folks to periodically review accomplishments, as a method of inspiring future successes).

When I put pen to paper and draft, or update, my 'Lifetime Resolution List' - my top resolutions, dreams and daily goals have always jumped from the paper.  Every year I have far more resolutions than I can realistically tackle.  I am careful not to bite off more than I can chew.  To do otherwise is a recipe for disaster.  I focus on just one major dream or theme, along with the other Lifetime Resolutions that are part of my daily life.  In 2008, for instance, my resolution was to show my gratitude for all that I have and all that I am by giving back in four areas of my life: 1) Walk 60 miles for the Washington, DC Breast Cancer 3-Day and raise $3000. 2) Volunteer at a Virginia Horse Rescue Farm. 3) Learn more about how to combat Global Warming and take action! 4) Engage in PreMeditated Acts Of Kindness.  I achieved 90% of my goals and plan to work to complete the rest in the coming year, along with a brand new list of dreams, resolutions and daily goals. 

I don't presume to suggest what you should do in the coming year.  No one knows better than you what dreams simmer like hot embers in your heart and mind.  If you want to quit smoking, I can't tell you to do it, or if it is time.  You have to make that decision.  If you want to get a new job, it is up to you to build a strategy.  If you want to go back to school, write a novel, get fit, cultivate healthy eating habits . . . it is up to you to 'resolve' to make those dreams a reality.

Bottom Line:  When it comes to dreams, resolutions and daily goals, each one of us typically possesses pretty good emotional, intellectual and 'gut' instincts about what is right, and what we truly want to 'do and achieve' (a personal compass that guides us in the right direction if we are willing to observe where it is pointing).  What is important is to choose something about which we have enormous desire, interest and passion - something that offers challenge and excitement..

If a particular goal or dream is on your mind all the time;  or if a resolution lingers on your 'To Do List' year-after-year - it is possible that you have been afraid to pursue the dream, or because you simply can't give up on it.  That dream, resolution, or goal, is on your your list for a reason.  And I am not talking about that 'tired' list of 20 resolutions that revelers draft out of obligation each New Year because they feel obligated.  I am talking about a dream about which your have great passion, enthusiasm and desire, but perhaps lack the courage to make the time, and show the conviction and determination that is necessary to make it a reality!

As a 'serial goal-setter', I many years ago created a 'Lifetime Resolution List' - a list of dreams, resolutions, and goals, large and small - that I would love to achieve/fulfill in my lifetime.  I am realistic about my list.  Some dreams may never happen.  My time is finite on this earth.  A person can only do so much in one lifetime.  Some dreams drop off my list and are replaced by others as I grow, learn, age, and change. That said, success does breed success. If you want to achieve daily goals of all shapes and sizes, it is useful to know 'what they are, why you want to achieve them, when you are going to achieve them, and how you are going to achieve them'. 

My Lifetime Resolution List - A Wonderful Work In Progress:

  1. Write best-selling non-fiction books.
  2. Write best-selling E-Books and Audio Books.
  3. Help others to achieve their dreams, resolutions and daily goals.
  4. Maintain my physical fitness through daily 30/60-minute work outs.
  5. Get into the best physical shape of my life.
  6. Maintain a healthy diet.
  7. Maintain a life based on honesty, generosity, kindness, hard work, creativeness, passion, determination, organization, discipline, faith, hope, and integrity.
  8. Enjoy the journey - today - instead of looking to the future, the destination.
  9. Make more time for rest, reading, relaxation, and hobbies.
  10. Pay off all debt including my house and save money.
  11. Grow old with my soulmate.
  12. Write a best-selling novel.
  13. Play tennis several times each week.
  14. Learn to play golf.
  15. Spice up my wardrobe.
  16. Clean and organize my house and keep it that way.
  17. Simplify my life.
  18. Stop buying 'stuff' - I have enough.
  19. Meet new friends who share my interests in writing, the arts, music, animals, books, sports, gardening, and politics.
  20. Give back to the community, both time and money.
  21. Travel to Italy and Greece - learn to speak Italian.
  22. Travel to London and Spain.
  23. Travel to Paris in the Spring.
  24. Travel to Egypt
  25. Run or walk marathon(s).
  26. Learn more advanced Yoga.
  27. Read more books - at least two each month.
  28. Adopt a dog.
  29. Travel to the Grand Canyon as part of a cross-country roadtrip
  30. Visit all 50 U.S. States.
  31. Publish best-selling books of my photographs.
  32. Publish best-selling calendars of my photos, and I Resolve To . . .  strategies.
  33. Have my photos hanging in museums while I am still alive.
  34. Master Adobe Photoshop.
  35. Lighten up, have more fun and laugh more.
  36. Work less hard.
  37. Take more vacations.
  38. Syndicate a newspaper column.
  39. Write a wildly popular blog.
  40. Swim daily.
  41. Meditate daily.
  42. Own a summer home.
  43. Financially help disadvantaged and abused children.
  44. Help save animals and improve their lives.
  45. Grow Roses.
  46. Learn to make Creme Brulee.
  47. Lunch at the Russian Tea Room.
  48. Visit the top of the Empire State Building.
  49. Walk the length of the Brooklyn Bridge a second, third, fourth time!
  50. Make my mark on the world.
  51. Stop to 'smell the roses' and 'make each day count'.
  52. Read or re-read all of Ernest Hemingway's books.
  53. Visit the Taj Mahal.
  54. Take more frequent trips with my friends.
  55. Take more frequent regional weekend trips - explore and enjoy new adventures!
  56. Create a Foundation to help children, animals and the elderly.
  57. Take more breaks during the workday.
  58. Try something new each day.
  59. Perform daily Pre-Meditated Acts Of Kindness.
  60. Take daily walks as part of my training for annual Breast Cancer 3-Day Walks.
  61. Be open-minded, less stubborn and more flexible.
  62. Bake a cake from scratch and make a turkey with all the fixings.
  63. Recycle, Reuse, Reduce - Give The Boot To My Carbon Footprint!
  64. Travel to Great Britain for Wimbledon.
  65. Travel to New York for the U.S. Open Tennis Championships.
  66. Appreciate more sunsets and sunrises.
  67. Count my blessings each and every day.
  68. Stop complaining.
  69. Photograph the Maine coast.
  70. Visit Santa Fe, New Mexico
  71. Write and photograph daily!
  72. Eat more fruit and vegetables.
  73. Drink more water.
  74. Worry less, it all works out.
  75. Help my Mother turn her spare bedroom into her own special space!
  76. Build an Erector Set city that I can photograph in black and white - do a show!
  77. Smile more often.
  78. Think before I speak and listen more.
  79. Break out of my routines, try new things and dare to be different.
  80. Maintain a fabulous garden.
  81. Enjoy each new day as if it is my last.
  82. Show up every day, do my best, and know that it was good enough.
  83. Visit Toronto.
  84. Visit Ireland and do a walking tour in the countryside.
  85. Bike more frequently outdoors.
  86. Make family photo scrapbooks for my family members.
  87. Make things right when I have been wrong, apologize.
  88. Admit when I'm wrong.
  89. Practice what I preach, lead by example, talk can be cheap.
  90. Take a two week cruise in Europe, including Italy and Greece with my sisters and Mom.
  91. Read more of the classics.
  92. Read newspapers before they are several days old.
  93. Be bold, be nice, do good - Volunteer!
  94. Get more sleep.
  95. Learn to bake pies.
  96. Cook a couple days each week.
  97. Learn the names of the different kinds of birds that inhabit my six acres.
  98. Learn the names of the plants, shrubs and trees that inhabit my six acres.
  99. Be a Resolutionista:  Make resolutions.  Keep resolutions.  Enjoy the journey!
  100. Achieve my LifeTime Dreams List!


That is my list of the moment!  And "yes", I have achieved many of the resolutions (and dozens that are not listed here - I do keep track, as I mentioned above, because success inspires and breeds more success).  Now it is your turn to put pen to paper and draft a 'Lifetime Resolution List' of your own. It is an interesting, informative and inspirational exercise, as it helps dreamers like you and me to focus attention around the things that are truly important.  Just think, if each one of us pursues one dream each year, that amounts to dozens of achievements in a lifetime . . . a lifetime of doing what you love and loving what you do!

Remember:  I Resolve To . . . Achieve My New Year Resolutions, One Resolution, One Day At A Time For One Year.  It's your choice.  Do it today. Turn your resolution into reality in five simple, common sense steps:  Dare To Dream, Decide, Define, Develop A Plan, and Do It Daily. Make your resolution a permanent Lifetime Resolution, something that's with you for good!  Above all, Be A Resolutionista, someone who makes resolutions, keeps resolutions, and enjoys the journey!  Let's Go For It!

Need More Inspiration?  Wear Your Resolution!  Make Every Day New Year's Day.  Make Every Day Count.  Visit my resolution shop by clicking this link:  http://www.cafepress.com/iresolveto             

Kim M. Simpson - December 23, 2008
Copyright ©
I Resolve To™ . . . * All Rights Reserved 


I Resolve To™ . . . Approach My Resolution-Setting 'Systematically! - Day 350

A wonderful New Year is almost upon us. That magical time in which we are given a blank page on which we can write the next chapter in our lives. We are given the gift of time, 365 days in which we can shape and mold our ideas into something tangible and real. Are you ready to take a look back at what you accomplished in 2008 and a look forward at the wonderful possibilities for 2009? Are you ready to make 2009 better than 2008? If you really want to make and keep a New Year resolution don't put it off until the last minute. Don't make a hasty, champagne-induced list on the back of a cocktail IResolveToKeepResolutions napkin at the stroke of midnight on New Year's Eve. Start today. Begin dreaming and brainstorming about what you would love to achieve, create, experience, be, learn, do, feel, see, or have in the New Year!

Clarity of thought and purpose will enable you to take a dream from start to finish, turn a resolution into reality and make a goal happen. When you know 'what you want to achieve', 'why you want to achieve it', and 'how you're going to achieve it' it takes the guess work out of daily activities. Brainstorming and planning are vitally important 'first steps' if you want to achieve a dream, replace a bad habit with a good one, learn something new, create or achieve something. When you have a dream, a plan, and a process by which you can systematically approach your daily activities anything is possible!

As a starting point, consider the I Resolve To Formula For Success. It's a simple, common sense way to begin the process: Begin with a cherished dream, one in which you have enormous desire and interest.Turn that dream into a specific, one-sentence resolution that clearly states your intention. Make that resolution a reality with daily goals that can be achieved one at a time, one day at a time.

Dream + Resolution + Daily Goals = Success, Achievement & Reward!

When considering New Year Resolutions and mulling plans for dreams and goals, folks often make things harder than they need to be. Rather than drafting that long, tired list of resolutions that we think we 'should' make - the 'Sins' - why not make just one resolution. Make one resolution about which you have true desire, passion and interest. Forget about that long laundry list of resolutions that you make and fail to keep, year after year. That decision alone increases your odds of success exponentially. Embarking on the journey with clarity of purpose, a dream about which you have great interest and passion, and a systematic process removes nagging questions and doubt about 'what to do first' and 'what to do next'.

I preach about pursuing one resolution, one day at a time for one year because it has worked so well for me, year after year. Throughout my life I have made dreams and resolutions a reality by following this simple, common sense approach. I long ago made a commitment, a promise to myself, to stop smoking, to exercise daily, write, build a business, excel at photography, earn college degrees, own a home, and work from my home. Those are just a few of my dreams, my Lifetime Resolutions.I don't believe in making resolutions and checking them off my list. I make them and keep them with me for good.

A key to my success is that I pursue just one life-changing dream, and make just one major resolution at a time. To do otherwise is a recipe for quick failure. Our lives are packed full of activities as it is, it's no wonder that we don't have ambition to tackle a long list of changes that we think we should make because that's what folks do in the New Year. It's not surprising that most people abandon their Resolution list - diet, exercise, save, stop smoking, stop drinking - after days or weeks. The list exists, but the passion, commitment, and desire is lacking. Personally I believe the most popular resolutions are great ways to improve lives, but without true heartfelt desire for change, a resolution is nothing more than an empty promise.

This year can be different, but you must have the desire to make it so. Don't abandon the practice of making New Year Resolutions - change the paradigm! Think outside the box. Don't be afraid to color with a red crayon instead of the same blue one you always use. Be a Resolution Revolutionary: change the way you think about and approach dreams, resolutions and goals. Try my Formula For Success and apply the I Resolve To Do's,they're simple, easy to use, and easy to understand:

  • Dare To Dream: Open your mind and consider all the wonderful possibilities. Find a quiet spot where you can relax and daydream with your journal. Make a list of the 100 things that you would truly love to do, be, see, feel, create, experience, learn, achieve, and have while you're here on earth - your Lifetime Resolution List. Focus like a laser on the one dream that most inspires you, makes you excited and nervous at the same time. Focus on the one that you will want to pursue day after day.
  • Decide: Make a firm decision, a personal commitment, a promise to yourself to pursue that dream today; to make it a Lifetime Resolution that is with you for good. Why fulfill a dream, then check it off your list? Why not achieve it, keep it with you, and enjoy it for life!
  • Define: Turn that dream into a specific, one-sentence resolution that provides clarity of purpose. For instance, I Resolve To exercise for 30-minutes daily by walking, working out with weights, swimming, doing Yoga, and biking, so that I can maintain my weight, be fit and toned (i.e. look good in my clothes, and feel good about myself), be healthy (i.e. lower my cholesterol and blood pressure), and maintain a good mood and positive outlook.
  • Develop A Plan: Do your homework. Learn all you can about the 'who, what, when, where, why, and how' of your dream, then turn that knowledge into written short and long-range plans that include daily, weekly, monthly, and quarterly goals, timelines, and milestones, along with a system of making course corrections, and rewarding victories. Keep a Daily Resolution Diary and do Daily and Weekly Check-Ins. Your plan is a living document that will grow and change as you grow, learn and change.
  • Do It Daily!: Each and every day take one small step - achieve at least one goal - that will enable you to make your dream, your resolution a reality. Try to devote at least 30-minutes each day to your dream. If you devote just 30-minutes each day to your dream that adds up like compound interest on money in the bank to 7.5 full 24-hour days in one year! Tell your friends and family and enlist their support. Find buddies who can make the journey with you. Seek out a mentor who can provide advice. Join a club or take a class to learn new things that will lend motivation and inspiration to your quest. Wear your resolution on your shirt and plant a post-it on your computer, your mirror, your refrigerator - anyplace that will provide frequent reminders.

As you plot your course, don't forget to consider the obstacles - all the many things that can go wrong, or will stand in the way of progress, including obstacles of our own making like pessimism, a bad attitude, lack of faith, hope, determination, and un-willingness to work hard. Consider the I Resolve To Don'ts:

  • Procrastinate: Put an end to the 'Someday, Someday, Someday Syndrome'. Do It Today. Stop waiting for tomorrow. Take action, one small step today, another one tomorrow, and another one the next day. Get rid of the guilt caused by doing nothing. The smallest steps can energize you and build lasting momentum. Sometimes 'just showing up' is all you need to do. Get off the couch, put on your tennis shoes and head for the tennis courts. Fire up the computer and write the next page in your novel. Your best effort may surface on the days you feel least motivated!
  • Give Into Fear Of Success Or Fear Of Failure: Embrace your fears and your mistakes. Understand them, learn from them, so you can overcome them and move forward with confidence. Obstacles will appear like dandelions on a Spring day at times. Identify the potential obstacles and prepare for them. Knowledge is power and it will help you to move past your obstacles and fears. Don't sabotage yourself by self-limiting behaviors. A little daily introspection can go a long way. Think about what you're doing and why you're doing it - if you're getting in your own way, figure out a way around.
  • Get Overwhelmed Or Discouraged: Give yourself the gift of time to achieve your dream and make your resolution a reality. Pursue your resolution one small step - one goal - one day at a time for one year. If you have a rough day today, know tomorrow is right around the corner. Patience, passion and persistence will get you through those bleak, rough days. Know when it's time to lower the bar just a little and reduce expectations. When you're feeling down, pull out your journal and review all your victories. Reward yourself, often, for successes and milestones.
  • Grow Bored, Weary Or Burned Out: Set a realistic pace and be realistic about your goals - what you can achieve by a specific date. Remember you don't have to reach the top of the mountain overnight. Novels aren't written in a day, college degrees take years to earn, getting in shape takes weeks and months. In short, dreams take time and hard work that's why it's so important to commit to a resolution that you would love to achieve. You have to want to spend time working on it each and every day. You need 'fire in the belly'. As you progress vary your activities to keep things interesting, take breaks, and be kind to yourself.
  • Give Up!: Keep track of your successes - your hard won victories - and use them to fuel the fire of your passion and to motivate yourself on both the good and bad days. Keep your eye on the prize and know in time you will succeed. Faith, hope, and optimism will see you through. If you're feeling pessimistic and hopeless - rather than give up - take a vacation from your dream, resolution and daily goals. Rest, relax and take care of yourself, but be sure to schedule a specific date to 're-start' and know what your next step will be.

Personally, I think about my dreams, resolutions and goals each and every day - 365 days each year. To make and keep New Year Resolutions, I firmly believe you need make each and every day New Year's Day. It helps to view each day as a brand new blank slate - a clean sheet of paper on which you will write that day's story. Above all, make each and every day count. If you're committed to your resolution to that degree, your odds of succeeding are far greater than if you and work on it occasionally. If you're truly serious about 'Making Each And Every Day New Year's Day - Making Each And Every Day Count' - I strongly urge you chronicle your journey. Write things down. Keep a Daily Resolution Diary.I track my own progress each day in spiral notebooks and on calendars that Is receive from charitable organizations that I support. Writing things down enables 'Resolutionistas' - those folks who make Resolutions, keep them, and enjoy the journey - to brainstorm and build concrete plans, to chart progress, track milestones, and most importantly to build in rewards for progress and hard won victories.

I carry my spiral notebooks and calendar with me in my purse. That practice helps to keep my dreams, resolutions and goals front and center. When I have a few spare minutes, I pull out my notebook and do some planning. I do Daily Check-Ins in the morning because they enable me to plan my day and schedule at least 30-minutes or an hour into my day specifically for my resolution goals. That may not be realistic for everyone. If you can only Check-In a couple times during the week, and once each weekend, that works too. The point is to Check-In frequently, so you can grow your plan, make course corrections, adjust your timeline, and most importantly, devote some time each and every day to your project.

Each weekend, I carve out an hour or two to sit down in a quiet spot with my coffee, notebook and calendar. I spend that time noodling my 'Things To Do'Lists', what I achieved that week, and what I plan to achieve - the next steps for the coming week, month and quarter. Planning ahead is another key ingredient of achieving dreams, resolutions and goals. It's not enough to know what you need to do today and tomorrow. You need to know the next 10, 20, 50, 100 goals. When you complete those goals, you need to be primed and ready to hit the next 100 in your plan. That clarity of thought and purpose instills confidence.

Why not begin today. Each one of us has dreams. Why not pull one off your Lifetime Resolution List and 'go for it'today. Make it a priority in your life during the coming New Year. Rather than live a life of regret for all that you 'didn't do', be grateful and happy for all that you have, all that you are, and all that you 'do' in your life.

Remember:  I Resolve To . . . Achieve My New Year Resolutions, One Resolution, One Day At A Time For One Year.  It's your choice.  Do it today. Turn your resolution into reality in five simple, common sense steps:  Dare To Dream, Decide, Define, Develop A Plan, and Do It Daily. Make your resolution a permanent Lifetime Resolution, something that's with you for good!  Above all, Be A Resolutionista, someone who makes resolutions, keeps resolutions, and enjoys the journey!  Let's Go For It!

Need More Inspiration?  Wear Your Resolution!  Make Every Day New Year's Day.  Make Every Day Count.  Visit my resolution shop by clicking this link:  http://www.cafepress.com/iresolveto             

Kim M. Simpson - December 15, 2008
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