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10 Killer Ways to Rock the New Year by Making Resolutions that You’ll Really Keep

10 Killer Ways to Rock the New Year by Making Resolutions that You’ll Really Keep

You know the drill—it’s always the same. Every New Year, millions of people get all ramped up to start the New Year off with a bang, setting all kinds of resolutions, making all sorts of promises to themselves and others, and by the beginning of February, the only thing that’s banging is their heads against the wall.

new year resolution

    Things really shouldn’t be this way, but alas, for most of us, they are. It’s not that we don’t want to make changes in our lives, but most of us are unaware of how keying into a few old-school tactics can help us to rock a new year in with resolutions we’ll actually keep. Here’s the secret: there is no special formula; no magic wand to wave over ourselves that will transform us into rock stars that actually do what we say, and no, there isn’t a pill for it yet either.

    The secret is this: it takes good old fashioned American work to succeed at anything!

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    It may be a New Year, but you’re the same you, and if you want to rock the New Year in with some killer success strategies that’ll stick, you have to be willing to work hard and believe you can make it happen. Here are ten strategies that will help get you on track, and keep you there:

    #1 Persevere

    Most people are gung-ho at the beginning of the year, all “Yippee!Go get em! Live the dream, set new goals, lose that flab, and get that makeover”, but hype won’t get you anywhere. That’s why most of us fail to do much of anything. The only thing that will work for you—whether you’re trying to lose weight, start a new business, or set new goals—is to realize that anything of value, anything that’s worthwhile takes time and perseverance to achieve. There are no shortcuts. No guts, no glory.

    #2 Dig Deep

    Most of us fail at keeping our resolutions because we lack passion, we’re too general in defining our goals, and we’ve had way too many failures on the front end of things. In other words, we expect to fail. To succeed, you have to dig deep and find out what’s really important to you. People who are passionate about what they’re doing don’t burn out as easily. That doesn’t mean they don’t get tired; it means they something more powerful is driving them. This could be a cause, a belief, a need, or the love of something. Find your own passion, and there will be no stopping you.

    #3 Give

    Most people who are successful pour into the lives of others. They’re generous with their time, and they want to build value for others. If you want to succeed in anything, learn to be a giver: don’t think about what’s in it for you—think about giving others what they need, and everything else will fall into place.

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    #4 Build

    Don’t overlook the importance of building relationships. Whether you’re working on a new business, trying to lose weight, or trying for that promotion, relationships can provide the client base or support you need.

    #5 Get Counsel

    Successful people are always learning: they look to other successful people to mentor them they are teachable, and they don’t try to re-invent the wheel.

    #6 Invest

    Whatever you want to do, you have to invest in it. That means time, money and plenty of effort. Buy the right food if you’re trying to lose weight and make a lifestyle change. It may be more expensive to go organic, but you’re worth it. Spend the money on that great online course by a reputable teacher; you can’t make money if you won’t invest it your own business. You have to be willing to do things others won’t do.

    #7 Think Positively

    We’ve heard this one forever, but how many of us actually do it? Most people aren’t aware of how their negative internal monologues affect their abilities. Start noticing what you tell yourself on a daily basis: if you’re prone to negative self-talk, learn to replace it by building positive counter-statements. For a list of thinking errors to watch out for consider this:

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    Nothing keeps you from reaching your goals like stinkin’ thinkin’.

    #8 Write it Down

    Don’t skip this exercise! Get a piece of paper and write down a list of what is motivating you to lose the weight, continue with your writing, start a blog, create a new business, or whatever else you may be wanting to do in the New Year. You can do this on 3 x 5 cards. When your motivation waxes and wanes, pull ’em out and read them—slowly. If you want to lose weight and you’re tempted to overeat, remind yourself why this is an important lifestyle change for you. Ask yourself the following:

    • How do you want to feel about yourself at the end of the day?
    • Will this action help or hinder your ability to reach your goals?
    • What do you need to do to re-focus on the bigger picture?
    • What next steps might you need to take to do that?
    • How will you plan for future obstacles?

    #9 Never Give Up

    Winston Churchill said this years ago, but it still holds true: when the going gets tough, the tough get going. Most successful people have seen the bottom drop out plenty of times, but they suck it up and keep going anyway. When you want to quit, just take a break, regroup and come back into it when you feel ready.

    #10 Change Perspective

    When trouble or difficulty arise it’s easy to get discouraged: those last ten pounds that won’t come off, the rejection of another article, or the financial hit the new business took, for example. Discouragement can lead to despair—no bueno! Try looking at the obstacles through the lens of possibility, and see your challenges as opportunities for new growth or a change of direction. If you throw the towel in, you’re done.

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    So, now that you’re aware of some old tried-and-true ways to make your New Year’s resolutions stick, what the heck are you waiting for? Bring in 2013 with a bang!

    Back at you: What have you tried that’s helped you to turn a New Years resolution into a reality?

     

     

     

    More by this author

    Rita Schulte LPC

    Licensed Professional Counselor

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    Last Updated on March 30, 2020

    What Does Self-Conscious Mean? (And How to Stop Being It)

    What Does Self-Conscious Mean? (And How to Stop Being It)

    Have you ever walked into a room and felt like your nerves simply couldn’t handle it? Your heart beats fast, you start to sweat, and you feel like all eyes are on you (even if they’re really not). This is just one of the many ways that being self-conscious can rear its ugly head.

    You may not even realize you’re self-conscious, and you may be wondering, “What does self-conscious mean?” That’s a good place to start.

    This article will define self-consciousness, show how practically everyone has faced it at one point or another, and give you tips to avoid it.

    What Does Self-Conscious Mean?

    According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, self-conscious is defined as “conscious of one’s own acts or states as belonging to or originating in oneself.”[1]

    Not so bad, right? There’s another definition, though — one that speaks more to what you’re going through: “feeling uncomfortably conscious of oneself as an object of the observation of others.” For those of us who regularly deal with extreme self-consciousness, that second definition sounds about right.

    There are many different ways self-consciousness can spring up. You may feel self-conscious around people you know, like your family members or closest friends. You may feel self-conscious at work, even though you spend hours every week around your co-workers. Or you may feel self-conscious when out in public and surrounded by strangers. However, you probably don’t feel self-conscious when you’re home alone.

    How to Stop Being Too Self-Conscious

    When you’re in the throes of self-consciousness, it’s nearly impossible to remember how to stop feeling that way. That’s why it’s so important to prepare ahead of time, when you’re feeling ready to tackle the problem instead of succumbing to it.

    Here are a variety of ways to feel better about yourself and stop thinking about how others see you.

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    1. Ask Yourself, “So What?”

    One way to banish negative, self-conscious thoughts is to do just that: banish them.

    The next time you walk into a room and feel your face getting red, think to yourself, “So what?” How much does it really matter if people don’t like how you look or act? What’s the worst that could happen?

    Most of the time, you’ll find that you don’t have a good answer to this question. Then, you can immediately start assigning such thoughts less importance. With self-awareness, you can acknowledge that your negative thoughts are present and realize that you don’t agree with them.[2] They’re just thoughts, after all.

    2. Be Honest

    A lie that self-consciousness might tell is that there’s one way to act or feel. Honestly, though, everyone else is just figuring life out as well. There isn’t a preferred way to show up to an event, gathering, or public place. What you can do is be honest with your feelings and thoughts.[3]

    If you feel offended by something someone says, you don’t have to smile to be polite or laugh to fit in with the crowd. Instead, you can politely say why you disagree or excuse yourself and find a group of people who you relate to better. If you’re nervous, don’t overcompensate by trying to look relaxed and casual — it’ll be obvious you’re putting on a front. Instead, nothing is more endearing than saying, “I’m a little nervous!” to a room of people who probably feel the exact same way.

    On the same note, if you don’t understand why someone wants you to do something, question it. You can do this at work, at home, or even with people you don’t know well. Nobody should force you to do something you don’t want to do.

    Also, even if you’re willing to do what’s asked of you, there’s nothing wrong with asking for more clarification. People will realize that you’re not a person to be bossed around.

    3. Understand Why You’re Struggling at Work

    Being self-conscious at work can get in the way of your daily responsibilities, your relationships with co-workers, and even your career as a whole. If you’re facing some sort of conflict but you’re too nervous to speak up, you may be at the whim of what happens to you instead of taking some control.

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    If you’re usually confident at work, you may be wondering where this new self-consciousness is coming from. It’s possible that you’re dealing with burnout.[4] Common signs are anxiety, fatigue and distraction, all of which can leave you feeling under-confident.

    4. Succeed at Something

    When you create success in your life, it’s easier to feel confident[5] and less self-conscious. If you feel self-conscious at work, finish the project that’s been looming over your head. If you feel self-conscious in the gym, complete an advanced workout class.

    Exposing yourself to what you’re scared of and then succeeding at it in some way (even just by finishing it) can do wonders for your self-esteem. The more confidence you build, the more likely you are to have more success in the future, which will create a cycle of confidence-building.

    5. Treat All of You — Not Just Your Self-Consciousness

    Trying to solve your self-consciousness alone may not treat the root of the problem. Instead, take a well-rounded approach to lower your self-consciousness and build confidence in areas where you may struggle.

    Even professional counselors are embracing this holistic type of treatment[6] because they feel that the health of the mind and body are inextricably linked. This approach combines physical, spiritual, and psychological components. Common activities and treatments include meditation, yoga, massage, and healthy changes to diet and exercise.

    If much of this is new to you, it will pay to give it a try. You never know how it will impact you.

    If you’re feeling self-conscious about how your body looks, a massage that makes you feel great could boost your confidence. If you try a new workout, you could have something exciting to talk about the next time you’re in a group setting.

    Putting yourself in a new situation and learning that you can get through it with grace can give you the confidence to get through all sorts of events and nerve-wracking moments.

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    6. Make the Changes That Are Within Your Control

    Let’s say you walk into a room and you’re self-conscious about how you look. However, you may have put a lot of time and effort into your outfit. Even though it may stand out, this is how you have chosen to express yourself.

    You have to work on your internal confidence, not your external appearance. There’s nothing to change other than your outlook.

    On the other hand, maybe there’s something that you don’t like about yourself that you can change. For example, maybe you hate how a birthmark on your face looks or have varicose veins that you think are unsightly. If you can do something about these things, do it! There’s nothing wrong with changing your appearance (or skills, education, etc.) if it’s going to make you more confident.

    You don’t have to accept your current situation for acceptance’s sake. There’s no award for putting up with something you hate. Confidence is also required to make changes that are scary, even if they’re for the better. Plus, it may be an easier fix than you thought. For example, treating varicose veins doesn’t have to involve surgery — sometimes simple compression stockings will take care of the problem.[7]

    7. Realize That Everyone Has Awkward Moments

    Everyone has said something awkward to someone else and lived to tell the tale. We’ve all forgotten somebody’s name or said, “You too!” when the concession stand girl says to enjoy our movie. Not only are these things uber-common, but they’re not nearly as embarrassing as you feel they are.

    Think about how you react when someone else does something awkward. Do you think, “Wow, that person’s such a loser!” or do you think, “What a relief, I’m not the only one who does that.” Chances are good that’s the same reaction others have to you when you stumble.

    Remember, self-consciousness is a state of mind that you have control over. You don’t have to feel this way. Do what you need to in order to build your confidence, put your self-consciousness in perspective, and start exercising your “I feel awesome about myself” muscle. It’ll get easier with time.

    When Is Being Self-Conscious a Good Thing?

    Self-consciousness can sometimes be a good thing[8], but you have to take the awkwardness and nerves out of it.

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    In this case, “self-aware” is a much better term. Knowing how you come off to people is an excellent trait; you’ll be able to read a room and understand how what you do and say affects others. These are fantastic skills for people work and personal relationships.

    Self-awareness helps you dress appropriately for the occasion, tells you that you’re talking too loud or not loud enough, and guides a conversation so you don’t offend or bore anyone.

    It’s not about being someone you’re not — that can actually have adverse effects, just like self-consciousness. Instead, it’s about turning up certain aspects of yourself to perform well in the situation.

    Final Thoughts

    When you’re self-conscious, you’re constantly battling with yourself in an effort to control how other people view you. You try to change yourself to suit what you think other people want to see.

    The truth, though, is that you can’t actually control how other people view you — and you may not even be correct about how they view you in the first place.

    Being confident doesn’t happen overnight. Instead, it happens in small steps as you slowly build your confidence and say “no” to your self-consciousness. It also requires accepting that you’re going to feel self-conscious sometimes, and that’s okay.

    Sometimes worrying that there is a problem can be more stressful than the problem itself. Feeling bad for feeling self-conscious can be more troublesome than simply feeling it and getting on with the day.

    Forgive yourself for being human and make the small changes that will lead to better confidence in the future.

    More Tips for Improving Your Self-Esteem

    Featured photo credit: Cata via unsplash.com

    Reference

    [1] Merriam-Webster: Self-conscious
    [2] Bustle: 7 Tips On How To Stop Feeling Self-Conscious
    [3] Marc and Angel: 10 Things to Remember When You Feel Unsure of Yourself
    [4] Bostitch: How to Protect Small Businesses From Burnout
    [5] Psychology Today: Self-conscious? Get Over It
    [6] Wake Forest University: Embracing Holistic Medicine
    [7] Center for Vein Restoration: What Causes Venous Ulcers, and How Are They Treated?
    [8] Scientific American: The Pros and Cons of Being Self-Aware

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