As 2012 approaches, many of St. Louis area residents at this time of year are beginning to reflect on what they’d like to change in their lives rethinking about the events and emotions that took place in 2011– from staying in shape, to reducing debt, to finding a new job or taking a trip. The New Year is always a new beginning and a fresh start for positive goal setting. So, while others search for the best ways to make their New Year’s Resolutions a reality, now is the time to self evaluate you and make the change.
Positive thinking of how to reprioritize, gain some organization, and strengthen the mind for better success is always a plus.
Don’t think that change can make a difference?
Yes it can, in the words of Mr. T “I pity the fool.”In order to reach the happiness that life brings you have to compromise, sacrifice, and have the will power to persevere even when the sunshine is gone to accomplish the goal. Many like to credit haters (a person that simply cannot be happy for another person’s success. So rather than be happy they make a point of exposing a flaw in that person.)for their failure but the failure is you.
Honestly, you are the sole person responsible for the outcome of the decisions you make. So stop making excuses and blaming others for your shortcomings. Make a list and accomplish each change one at a time and remember have faith in you. Patience is the key to winning all success and receiving the blessings you deserve.
I have listed a few scenarios that you all can relate too and would like to change in 2012.
You’re stressed and having difficulty finding balance in your life because of cutbacks or layoffs where you work. Afraid it may happen to you, so you’re putting in more hours. If you’refeeling overworked and finding it more challenging than ever to juggle the demands of your job and the rest of your life, you’re not alone. You don’t have much control over the hours you have to work, so you ask?
In what other ways are you bringing greater enjoyment into my life?
Beat the fatigue by discovering ways to devote more time to the activities and people that matter most to you.
“Focus your time and attention on things you can control.”
The entire St. Louis region is feeling the pinch of stress at this time, and the travel industry is suffering because there is less money to spend these days on luxuries like travel. But a tight budget doesn’t stop you from wanting to travel. Apart from general happiness, I think dreaming of travel, visiting new places and seeing new things is probably one of the most universal life goals.
Yet you want to travel more but never make plans. There are so many excuses for not traveling: the expense, the kids and the job are all commonly used to explain why you can’t travel right now. But what’s the point in deferring your dreams? To me, you should be able to follow your dreams even if you do have a tight budget, a growing family and a demanding career. All you need to do is change your mindset, make travel one of your top priorities and get on with it.
The purpose of travel is to see new things and experience new cultures. Many of you think that in order to see things they’ve never seen before they need to travel far and abroad but that’s not true. St Louis has countless attractions, venues, and events happening weekly. Just take the time to follow the local news reports and plan a day or night out on the town. You can try enjoying the quiet winds on the riverfront with a date or the sultry sounds of the Jazz bistro with your gang. There’s a lot of talk about seeing the big sights, like visiting Six Flags, going up the Arch or touring the Missouri Botanical Garden. But these things tend to be expensive. They’re big ticket items so limit yourself to one at the most per trip.
St. Louis is one of the best cities in the country when it comes to free stuff to do. We’re not talking about the small stuff you’ll find in other cities, but major attractions like the world-class St. Louis Zoo. But don’t forget there’s also the Science Center, the Art Museum and more. It doesn’t matter if you’ve lived in St. Louis all your life or you’re new to the area, these top attractions are worth a visit. This is my top tip. Too often a vacation or travel becomes a check list of things to do. Promise yourself that you’ll enjoy the beautiful scenery and free your mind from the everyday stresses of life.
You’re in financial crisis and your debts are getting out of control, it’s time to take some action and sort out the situation. Even though your finances are in mess, you can still get out of debt and regain control over your money. But you need to find out the right get out of debt plan to achieve it. Here is some simple steps to getting out of debt:
Avoid new debts:
When you are already in debt, do not take out any more loans or credit. Avoid using credit cards at this point of time. However, cancel only those credit cards which have zero balance and negotiate with the credit card company to lower your interest rate.
What’s important is to stop using any more credit for your financing needs. Instead, you should try getting out of debt by enrolling in a debt consolidation program.
Curb your spending:
You can cut down your expenses by controlling your spending habits. Add up your monthly expenses and find out what you’ve spent the most on. Simply avoid unnecessary expenses if you’re interested in getting out of debt.
Increase your income
Your income will go up if you get a part time job. Sometimes selling your stuff online can give you some extra money. More money helps you put more towards paying off your debt.
Learn how to live a frugal life
Develop an awareness of how to manage your finances better and lead a frugal life. For instance, if you’re out for shopping, make sure you make use of the shopper saver tips and avoid overspending.
New Year’s Resolutions are a great motivator to shed unwanted habits….But often, we see people take the ‘cold turkey’ approach to kicking a bad habit, which is not the most effective or healthy way of changing unwanted behaviors. In fact, this leads to new unwanted behaviors that take the place of the old ones
Defining goals and setting realistic time-lines for kicking habits is the key to changing unwanted behaviors like smoking, overeating, drinking and caffeine addiction. While cigarette smoking is a habit that many people prefer to stop “cold turkey,” for many other habits this approach can be a set-up for failure because our mind and body are not programmed to adjust so quickly to abrupt changes.
I have listed the following tips to help identify, plan and eventually kick bad habits for a healthier, happier New Year:
Define your goals and then commit yourself to achieving them. You acknowledge that you need to make a change in your life for the better. You’re more likely to achieve that change than those individuals who think that they may, or may not, have a problem. Taking active steps towards making that change (i.e., joining a self-help group) will move you closer to success in kicking the habit. Change is not easy and requires commitment. As a start, by defining your specific behavior goals, you can begin changing your activities and attitudes accordingly.
Don’t do it alone. Get help. If you choose to discuss your goals with others, choose people who want you to succeed. Quitting bad habits is hard enough without having to watch the people near you enjoying what you have now deprived yourself of. If you want to quit smoking and your spouse is still smoking, your goal will be significantly more challenging. Find someone with the same goals, who wants to kick the same habit. Find support from friends, family, colleagues, or professional support groups.
Establish clear and realistic sub-goals and timelines. Rome was not built in a day – if it was that easy to kick a bad habit, we simply wouldn’t have bad habits. Chart your progress in a diary or calendar that outlines a realistic amount of time to eliminate the bad habit. If you are drinking 5 cups of coffee in the morning and have a goal of cutting down to one, give yourself a few weeks to achieve this (i.e., one cup less a week). The first big hurdle is to achieve 90-days of the target behavior.
Add, don’t just subtract. Add competing desirable behaviors to compensate for the elimination of bad habits. We often need something to take the place of a habit to help us maintain focus to successfully kick a habit. By replacing bad habits with positive ones, like exercise, meditation, time with family, healthier foods and activities, you are less likely to replace old bad habits with new bad habits.
Allow for some slippage – but not constant slippage. If you have decided to give up sweets to lose a few pounds or protect against cavities, but decide to have a bit of your aunt’s famous cheesecake, this is not an excuse to give up your goals and keep going. Plan ahead and set limits for yourself.
Reward yourself! Continue to acknowledge and reward yourself for the “baby-steps” you take in kicking a bad habit. Let the people around you reward your success and cheer you on the next step. This can be accomplished by setting up a “success amount” that continues to reward you as you continue to succeed. For example, you can treat yourself to a desired CD for every week of success and a DVD player for achieving 90-days of maintaining a target behavior. If you are going to buy these things anyway, you might as well do it in a way that helps you with your life goals.
Having a better Style in the New Year is something we all want. Everybody wants to look their best; here are some tips to help you do just that:
Check the magazines! Make sure to see what is new and fresh. Any famous magazine should do, try to copy some of their looks at first, and then when you feel ready try to mix and match on your own!
Look at what other people are wearing. Make sure to look at the “normal” people.
Style is irrelevant. You don’t need to dress perfectly, anything that you may like, is perfect for you just because you like it. Improve your posture. It really makes a difference!
Make sure that your clothes really fit you perfectly. Dress age appropriate. Don’t try to look older than you actually are.
Accessorize! It really makes your outfit more interesting!
Have fun with it! Don’t take yourself too seriously, wearing nice fitted jeans and a cute top usually does the trick.
Finding a spouse or improve your relationship is a popular area many are looking to change. Many are still searching for that true love while others are trying to repair their love. The only honest thing to do, if this is your situation is to love that person the way that you want to be loved and be totally honest with your emotions. Don’t be afraid and hold back because you think they will leave you. You have to be willing to take this risk because you need to feel loved as well, always ask questions if there is something that needs further explaining so that it doesn’t get carried away with the wrong point of view.
Many in the Saint Louis area are suffering from the restraints of the justice system. I know that you claim innocence but on the real note you got caught. So for those of you that want this to be over you have to follows the guidance of the parole board and the redemption plan they set forth. Pay all fines on time, complete all classes, and show that you are living the life of a civilized citizen to end the burden of further persecution. Yes we live in a democracy but Saint Louis is not the place for fair treatment and due process by law. I am not trying to put any of you on blast but the irresponsibility of your court judgment can show a lot about your character and good intentions. You cannot say I want this to be over when you are not acting responsibly in completing the sentence. Stop the talk and show with your actions. Acting like a child trying to seek sympathy and help is not the answer to the problem. Start using your faith and abilities to help better your life. You never know what you can accomplish if you never try.
Remember that it is illegal in Saint Louis City to fire a firearm for the New Year and a state felony if you are intoxicated.
Have a safe, happy, and blessed New Year