If you have resolved to make 2010 the year that you drop the smokes and stamp out forever your terrible tobacco addiction, get involved in a self-help group or personal program.
Our Scribbler looks at New Year’s resolutions and how long they last.
It is not the strongest of The species that survive Nor the most intelligent, But the one most responsive To change -Charles Darwin I promised my wife Betty that in the New Year I will absolutely, positively resolve to get organized. New Year’s Eve is a time for looking back to the past, and perhaps more importantly, looking forward to the New Year. It’s our time to reflect on the changes we all want, or need to make and resolve to follow through on those changes no matter how small or how large.
Did your New Year’s resolutions for 2009 make it through the year? Mine certainly didn’t, no matter how hard I tried. I have to be honest and say I didn’t really try too hard.
In thinking about this particular column I remembered to turn to my good and trustworthy friend, Google. I call him Goog - we are great online friends.
Wishing me a happy and prosperous year ahead, he was quick off the mark with ten great suggestions for you and me. “ These are easy or hard - it depends on how much you want to do them,” friend Goog told me. You might wish to cut these out for easy reference between now and Friday.
Here we go with our pledge for 2010. Repeat after me - we solemnly pledge to try, to the best of our ability to:
Share more time with family and friends
Recent polls conducted by social researchers show more than 50 per cent of us vow to appreciate loved ones and spend more time with family and friends in 2010. They suggest we make plans to meet up with friends for an evening of camaraderie at a favourite restaurant or take the family to the movies or to local arenas for hockey, skating and/ or live concerts. Work shouldn’t always come first!
Fit in proper fitness.
The studies are in on fitness. Regular exercise has been associated with more health benefits than anything else known to man/ woman. Studies show exercise reduces the risk of some cancers, increases longevity, helps achieve and maintain weight loss, enhances mood, lowers blood pressure, and even improves arthritis. Why not make 2010 time to start getting in shape. Get yourself ready to participate in one of those many charity-walks such as the Terry Fox Run for cancer.
Cut down on that bulge. Over 65 per cent of adults are considered overweight, some obese. Weight loss is amongst the most popular New Year’s resolutions. Setting reasonable goals and staying focused are the two most important factors in sticking with weight loss programs, and the key to success for those thousands of Canadians who make a New Year’s commitment to shed extra pounds.
Quit the smokes
If you have resolved to make 2010 the year that you drop the smokes and stamp out forever your terrible tobacco addiction, get involved in a self-help group or personal program. Even if you tried before and failed, start again! Start enjoying the rest of your life smoke-free. Every public building in the province is now smoke-free. Locally there are a variety of free support services, hotlines and smoking cessation groups to help you kick the habit. You should ask your doctor for advice. Perhaps he/ she will prescribe nicotine replacement therapy using proven and C.M.A. approved products.
Enjoy life to the fullest
Given the hectic, stressful lifestyles of many Canadians, it is little wonder that “enjoying life to the fullest” has become a popular resolution in recent years. It’s an important step to a happier and healthier you, psychologists say. They suggest you consider one of the many health spas for programs designed to bring balance to body and mind. Or, just get out and try something new. Take up a hobby or try skiing or cross-country trekking. Go to theatre performances and regularly check recreational activities in your area that meet just about anyone’s wishes.
Give up booze
While many people use New Year’s resolutions as an incentive to stop, drinkers fail to quit cold turkey but do much better when they decide to taper gradually, or even learn to drink moderately. For those who really need to stop, there are support groups available to assist. Alcoholics Anonymous ( AA) is the super star so to speak, offering meetings seven days a week throughout the province. There’s also Alanon for spouses of heavy drinkers and self-help ALATEEN groups for teens. If drugs are the problem, your local Community Health Services professionals can advise you about treatment-based support groups for drug abusers and their families. Do away with debt Was finance a big source of stress for you in 2009? Join the thousands of Canadians who have or soon will decide to get a handle on their finances. There is loads of help available through credit counseling and other such programs. If gambling is the source, try ( G. A.) Gambling Anonymous, another proven success if and when the addict/abuser is ready to take certain steps.
Learn something new
Vow to make 2010 the year to learn something new. Perhaps you can consider a career change, to learn a new language, or just how to use the computer properly. Whether you take a course or read a good book, you will find education to be one of the most rewarding, most motivating New Year’s resolutions to keep. Memorial University offers a wide variety of learning courses and local YMCAs offer recreational training for beginners of all ages. Remember too that most community colleges offer adult education programs-some of which can be acquired and worked online.
Help others in need
One of the most meaningful resolutions we can make is to help others in need. Volunteerism can take many forms. Whether you choose to help out at a local hospital, mentor a child, or provide some financial or other aid to the poor, many nonprofit organizations can use your help every now and then. The C.S.C. (Community Services Counsel) can put you in touch with volunteer organizations that can fit you into any schedule you like. If you don’t want to volunteer, consider donating the furniture, clothing and/ or other items that you are discarding or no longer need to goodwill centres in your area.
As mentioned before, this one is on the top of my list. I think it is a reasonable goal. Whether you want your home organized or, in my case, office organized, there are tips and resources available through consultation with professionals in the business. I’m told that getting organized is easy but staying organized is another big challenge. It is a skill that has to be learned.
As for my planning, organizing and controlling - on the morning of Jan. 1, 2010 I will turn to my wife Betty. She warns me regularly that “it’s going to be organization or like Tammy Wynett sings D.I.V.O.R.C.E.”
Have a happy and prosperous New Year everyone! I hope to see you back here next week resolved and determined!
Oh yes, and a happy New Year to you too Goog! With this disorganized brain of mine I almost forgot.
Bill Westcott writes from his messy, disorganized home office in Florida.-