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Take Honest Look at Resolutions

If you're like everyone else you've already started thinking about what changes you're going to make in your life in 2013-and calling those your New Year's Resolutions.

According to the Opinion Corporation of Princeton, of the 62% of people who make New Year's resolutions, a mere 8% are successful.
 
After more than a dozen years of working with and studying successful people, teams and organizations, thought leader and inspirational speaker Greg Bell believes that giant timber bamboo farmers can teach us a lot about what it takes to make our resolutions stick.

His theory comes from this proverb: If you water giant timer bamboo in the first year, nothing happens. If you water the second year, nothing happens. If you water the third year, nothing happens. But when you water the bamboo the fourth year, it will rocket up an astonishing 90 feet in only 60 days.
 
Bell, author of Water the Bamboo: Unleashing the Potential of Teams and Individuals adds,  "Water the Bamboo is a metaphor for success based on the contention that success is fueled by creating unshakable motivation and persistence, developing laser-like focus to avoid distractions, and being fully committed to pursuing your goal."

 
And the writer used that philosophy to develop the following steps to help kick aside the "woulda, coulda and shoulda's" and make this year's resolutions stick:
 
 Have a compelling vision of what you want to achieve: After all, if you don't know what you are working towards, how will you know whether you're making progress?

 Delineate goals:  Pinpointing mini-goals helps ensure you get where you want to go.  Instead of setting out to exercise every day of the week for an hour, commit to exercising for ten minutes five times a week. Then, once you get in the habit of fulfilling this mini goal, increasing it by ten minutes will be easier since you have already begun forming the habit of exercise.
 
Believe in yourself and your vision: Whether you believe you will be successful or you believe you won't --- you're right. Believing will give you the energy and effort to achieve success.

Strengthen supportive relationships:  No person is an island.  Make a list of the people who can help you achieve your goal and work on keeping those relationships strong.

Have self-discipline: As Theodore Roosevelt said, "With self-discipline most anything is possible."  Great achievement and success are largely the consequence of self-discipline.

 Will it to happen: "I will" are two very powerful words. Wanting something to happen is one thing; Willing something to happen is quite another.

 Be optimistic: Successful people don't throw pity parties. They see challenges as opportunities.  They focus on creating solutions amidst the obstacles. They remain hopeful, energetic and motivated in the face of "negaholics."

Commit:  Commitment is the bridge between desire and accomplishment.  Making resolutions stick takes unwavering commitment and adopting a non-negotiable approach to reaching your goal. No excuses, no holding back, no sabotaging your own success.

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