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How to make New Year’s resolutions – and keep them!

New Year is almost upon us, and with it comes the great festival of self-delusion that is New Year’s resolutions!

We’re all guilty of it … this year I’m going to eat/drink/smoke/watch TV less and exercise/read/volunteer more. And even though we have the best of intentions of sticking to these resolutions, it always seems that, come February, life has taken hold again and we have forgotten all about what we set for ourselves.

But it doesn’t have to be that way. Here are some tips on how to make New Year’s resolutions stick!

1. Work out what is truly important to you.

There are countless things we would all like to change about ourselves, but probably only a few things that are harmful or debilitating to our lives. Focus on those behaviours, whether it’s wishing to lose weight, overcome shyness or to stop smoking, and put those on your list.

2. Identify the root issues.

Most times, a habit or behaviour we would like to change about ourselves is rooted in a whole host of smaller behaviours. For instance if you wish to stop smoking, you could start by identifying when you most like to smoke. Maybe it is during your workday, when you feel the most stressed? In which case, perhaps all you really need to do is learn to relax mentally, perhaps take five minutes away from your desk or co-workers to walk and clear your head.

By identifying the issues that lead to the debilitating behaviour (whatever it is) and addressing them, you can then take on a whole host of smaller battles that will make winning the bigger war that much easier.

3. Write your resolutions down.

There’s something concrete about writing resolutions down, like you’re entering into a contract with yourself. And don’t just type them into a word doc and save them onto your computer, never to be looked at again – physically take a pen and paper and write them out and (if not too private) stick them in a place where they will do the most good, ie: on the fridge if your goal is to lose weight, or on the TV screen so you actually have to remove it to watch TV if your goal is to watch less TV.

4. Imagine your life if you don’t change.

Now take a moment to think about the ghost of New Year’s future, and what your life (and the lives of your loved ones) will be like if you don’t make the changes you really wish to make. For instance, if you want to get healthier, imagine what it would be like if you became unhealthier, and the worry that would cause your family.

New Year, new beginnings

The New Year is a natural time for all of us to take stock of our lives, and to pinpoint the areas that could do with a little polish. It is also a time when we should be thankful for what we have, but also consider what would happen if the things we have weren’t there.

That’s why many people naturally consider life insurance at New Year’s. It need not be one of the things you put in the too hard to do basket this year. Especially as you can request life insurance quotes online and take out cover over the phone in a single call. So if your resolution this year is to get your family’s finances in order in case something were to happen to you, then that’s one resolution that is very easy to keep.

Real Insurance is an award-winning provider of life insurance.

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