THIS WEEK IS

New Year's Resolutions Week -- January 2-8. The problem with New Year's resolutions is that people set their standards way to high when it comes to selecting them. It always happens, in early January we all are promising we're going to do 100 sit-ups a day, quit smoking and all the health stuff. Well, let's look at resolutions we can keep. I promise:
That if I win the lottery, I will gladly accept the money.
That I will take all the vacation time that's coming to me.
Not to give money to politicians.
If I can get off jury duty. I promise that I will.
If someone offers me a cold beer, I'll smile and say, "Thanks, don't mind if I do."
To leave work every day at the end of my shift.
When I get my paychecks this year, I'll cash them promptly.
If the IRS sends me any back this year, I promise not to argue with them about it.

How do you make your New Year's Resolution Stick? (At least past first week anyway...) Pauline Wallin, Ph.D offers some tips:

Examine your motivation for change.
Are you just feeling full and bloated at this moment? Do you have a hangover from last night? Did your last cigarette give you have a hacking cough? Or is there a more enduring reason for your desire to change? If you can't think of a better reason than the fact that you're uncomfortable at this moment, then you're better off not making promises to yourself that you probably won't keep. However, if you are realistic and accept the responsibility of discipline required for change, your motivation will be sustained long after the discomfort from over-indulgence has passed.

Set realistic goals.
Habits and behaviors that are changed gradually have a greater chance of success.

Focus on the behavioral change more than on the goal.
For example, if you decide to control your eating, your goal for the day is not to lose a specific number of pounds, but to stick to your program. Such focus on your behavior will help you feel in control of your life. You will gain satisfaction from making sensible choices several times throughout the day.

Learn to redefine physical sensations of discomfort.
Whenever we restrict ourselves, we have both physical and mental reactions. For example, a smoker feels bodily sensations when his nicotine level drops. However, he has a choice as to how he interprets these symptoms. He can define them as extremely unpleasant, or alternatively he can interpret them as his body cleansing itself of the drug. Someone who is restricting food intake will also feel physical discomfort. However, the successful dieter tells himself that his growling stomach is a sign that his body must go to the fat reserves for energy.

Make tasks non-negotiable.
People who are most successful at implementing such changes are those who make their tasks non-negotiable. For example, if you debate with yourself at 5:30am whether you feel like getting up to exercise, you will probably opt for staying in bed for another half hour. But if getting up for exercise is no more negotiable than getting up for work, then you'll do it regardless of how you feel about it.

Allow for imperfection.
No one is exactly on target all the time. In fact you should expect to falter every now and then. If you give in to temptation, do not use this as an excuse to abandon the whole program. Learn from your mistake and move on.

Do it now.
If you're waiting for a more convenient time to begin behavioral change, it won't happen. It's almost never convenient to change ingrained habits. Now is just as convenient as any time. And if you begin now rather than later, you'll have a jump on a more satisfying future.

With up to 92 percent of Americans doomed to fail at keeping their New Year's resolutions -- "spend less and save more" is among both the most popular and most commonly broken -- WalletHub released its report on 2019's Best & Worst Cities for Keeping Your New Year's Resolutions. To help Americans stick to their 2019 goals, WalletHub compared more than 180 U.S. cities across 56 key metrics. The data set ranges from adult obesity to income growth to employment outlook.

Best Cities for Keeping Your New Year's Resolutions

1. San Francisco, CA
2. Scottsdale, AZ
3. San Diego, CA
4. Seattle, WA
5. Irvine, CA
6. San Jose, CA
7. Salt Lake City, UT
8. Austin, TX
9. Portland, OR
10. Orlando, FL

Worst Cities for Keeping Your New Year's Resolutions

173. Laredo, TX
174. Charleston, WV
175. Augusta, GA
176. Huntington, WV
177. Jackson, MS
178. Detroit, MI
179. Fort Smith, AR
180. Newark, NJ
181. Shreveport, LA
182. Gulfport, MS

Best vs. Worst:

Fremont, California, has the lowest share of obese adults, 14.7 percent, which is 3.1 times lower than in Detroit, the city with the highest at 45.1 percent.
Seattle, has the lowest share of delinquent debtors, 1.92 percent, which is 6.3 times lower than in Jackson, Mississippi, the city with the highest at 12.13 percent.
South Burlington, Vermont, has the lowest unemployment rate, 2.0 percent, which is 4.7 times lower than in Detroit, the city with the highest at 9.3 percent.
Huntington, West Virginia, has the lowest prevalence of adult binge- and heavy drinking, 12.15 percent, which is 2.4 times lower than in Madison, Wisconsin, the city with the highest at 29.44 percent.
San Jose, California, has the lowest share of adult smokers, 8.20 percent, which is three times lower than in St. Louis, the city with the highest at 24.69 percent.

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