Resolutions You Can Actually Keep
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You Can Do It1 of 10
By Brienne Walsh
Breaking a New Year's resolution is almost as much a holiday tradition as setting one in the first place. But this time around, things will be different. With Glo's stick-to-it guide, you can anticipate potential setbacks and find out how to avoid them. Trust us—2012 is going to be your year!
Lose 5 Pounds2 of 10
Possible pitfall: You reward yourself for exercising by having one cookie, then another. And another, and another…
Expert tip: "Make clear in your mind the difference between a commitment and a preference," says behavioral expert Patrick Wanis, Ph.D. "Once you're committed to losing weight, figure out a reward—like a manicure—that won't counteract your goal. Then you'll associate the positive benefit with doing the work, and you'll keep up your motivation."
Break A Bad Habit3 of 10
Possible pitfall: A week after quitting cold turkey, the temptation is just too great to resist.
Expert tip: "Try the 'chunking method,' which takes a larger goal, like quitting smoking, and breaks it down into smaller pieces," suggests Wanis. "Every week, cut the number down by a few. If you smoke 30 one week, smoke 28 the next. By setting smaller goals, you're reprogramming your mind to realize that your larger goal is achievable."
Find A Husband4 of 10
Possible pitfall: You focus solely on finding a guy—online, at the café, in the break room—without first taking a closer look at yourself to identify dating habits that just aren't working.
Expert tip: "It's not just about meeting men; it's about changing your approach," says Andrea Syrtash, dating expert and author of Cheat on Your Husband (With Your Husband). "If you don't know what your pattern is, think about your life as a movie: How would it begin and end? What character would you play? Is the leading man always unavailable?"
Rebuild A Bond5 of 10
Possible pitfall: You feel too guilty about going MIA that you postpone (indefinitely) actually reaching out.
Expert tip: "Holidays are a great excuse to connect in an upbeat way. I'm a fan of emailing, because you're not putting someone on the spot," says Syrtash. And keep in mind that this is just a first step—reconnecting takes time. "Don't think of it in terms of all or nothing," says Syrtash. You don't have to go back to being BFF right away to feel good about reaching out.
Get More Me Time6 of 10
Possible pitfall: Instead of cutting back on all you do for others to take some much-deserved time for yourself, you end up over-scheduling, becoming even more stressed out and busier than before.
Expert tip: "We all suffer from compassion fatigue," says Debbie Mandel, author of Addicted to Stress: A Woman's 7 Step Program to Reclaim Joy and Spontaneity in Life. "I recommend trying a simple formula: For every one thing you do for someone else, do one thing for yourself."
Cut Down Debt7 of 10
Possible pitfall: You got caught up in holiday fever and overspent on presents, preemptively setting you back on your goal.
Expert tip: "I have a rule that if I buy something, I need to get rid of something else," says Mandel. "And if I'm already in debt, I only pay for things in cash, never with a credit card."
De-Clutter Your Home8 of 10
Possible pitfall: You can't let things go because they have a sentimental value you think you'll never be able to replace.
Expert tip: "The past can bring us down," says Mandel. "If you don't like the piano you inherited from your grandmother, take a photograph of it, frame it and then get rid of it."
Be More Creative9 of 10
Possible pitfall: You know that you have a talent, but you dread criticism from others.
Expert tip: "Find a buddy who holds you accountable," says Gail McMeekin, CEO of personal empowerment business Creative Success. "If you want to write a book, send each other a chapter every month. Find the support you need, and then don't lose faith in yourself."
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Be Happier At Work10 of 10
Possible pitfall: You get so caught up in the office politics that you lose focus on your job—and how you can move forward in your career.
Expert tip: "We get stuck with who and what we get stuck with," says McMeekin. "Spend time only with the people you like, and help each other out. Networking isn't only about getting—it's first and foremost about giving to someone else."