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Very Personal New Year’s Resolutions + How To Stick To Them

Me after completing a 3-day 300 mile bike ride. photo by Lynnette at

Each and every year I actually do come up with at least one New Year’s Resolution, and I consciously attempt to stick to it throughout the year.

I also pick a quote that I would like to embody the coming year.

It’s kind of interesting to see where one’s priorities lie, and how they change over time…

2011: To start cycling again as a means to stay in shape, get out of the house, and meet new people. At the age of 45, I kinda feel like I’m in search of a good “mid-life crisis” right now. Jim’s got his (going to NHRA drag racing events 23 weeks a year). I think cycling is mine.

My quote for this year:

Isn’t fun the best thing to have?

— Arthur Bach (Dudley Moore)

…because it’s time to start having FUN again. I mean, to consciously turn everyday things into fun adventures and memorable events!

2010: To start walking more. On a small scale: several times a week around the neighborhood. On a larger scale: at the dog walking track where I can easily get in several miles at a good pace. Yes, the dog always goes with me. (He’s good at loose-leash walking now.)

My quote for this year:

Think of your health as a bank account. You make deposits (nutrition, exercise, etc) and you make withdrawals (stress, etc).

— unknown

…I made this one up myself and tweeted it one day. It got a couple of re-tweets, so it kinda stuck with me. The more we remember that our health is the underlying factor that determines how our life ultimately goes, the better (and healthier) our lives will be.

2009: To be more ‘green’ and efficient in the kitchen and all throughout the house.

My quote for this year:

Do what you can, where you are, with what you have.

— Teddy Roosevelt

…because it’s never too late to make a difference in the way tomorrow turns out. And every little thing adds up.

2008: To cook at home more — enough to pay for the new pots & pans I bought (…and the large custom kitchen we’ve designed for our new log home).

My quote for this year:

Do it now! Today will be yesterday tomorrow.

— Anonymous

…because there’s no time like the present to make a change in your life. I’ve wanted to do more cooking at home for ages now, but laziness always prevails. That and the fact that dining out is one of the only ways we take the time to do something together these days.

2007: To take our business to the next level. Since we’re no longer working for someone else, it’s time to take our creative ideas to new heights and get the most out of being entrepreneurs with nothing but time on our hands while working from our home.

My quote for this year:

An entrepreneur is a person who will work 16 hours a day for himself just so he doesn’t have to work 8 hours a day for someone else.

— Anonymous

…because Jim and I both work a crazy amount of hours on The Fun Times Guide network of websites and other related jobs. The best part is we absolutely love what we do, and we are so fortunate that we can make a living doing things that we are truly passionate about. This is the year I want to push myself to break out of my comfort zone — like going to social events, speaking in public, and sharing my ideas (out loud, where others could critique them).

To do all this. (Basically, organize lots of things in my life and streamline other things that I enjoy doing.)

My quote for this year:

Today is tomorrow’s yesterday. Make the best of it, for it will never come again.

— Janice Markowitz

…because I need to quit putting off all of those little things that I’ve been meaning to do — including trying out some of those great ideas I’ve tabled until “later”.

2005: To focus on our marriage by putting my husband first at times when I’d normally put myself first.

My quote for this year:

Fun shared is not halved, it is doubled.

— Anonymous

…because Jim and I tend to have a lot of fun when we’re together. So much so that we’ve always incorporated “fun” into our business names (like The Fun Times Guide and FunWheelers, to name two).

2004: To determine our ultimate plans regarding pregnancy, adoption, IVF, etc. (After much discussion, Jim and I decided to take a step back. If it was meant to be, then it will be… naturally.)

My quote for this year:

Everything will be okay in the end. If it’s not okay, it’s not the end.

— John Lennon

…because sometimes it’s refreshing to rely solely on fate and what was truly meant to be in your life.

To go to church regularly… again.

My quote for this year:

Change is good.

— Anonymous

…Church is not so much a religious experience for my, as much as it’s an important step toward change in my life. A personal awakening of sorts. Good things always come when I break out of my normal routine (like not going to church) and start making a small effort toward seeing things differently, both in general and in the company of church friends.

2002: To drink more water with meals instead of soda. It’s one small way to become more fit and healthy… and save money when dining out!

My quote for this year:

It is never too late to become what you might have been.

— George Eliot

…because I don’t want to live my life regretting the fact that I wasn’t very healthy.

To be less controlling. It’s okay if I’m not always in full control at all times. This is the year to slow down and enjoy life and all that I have.

My quote for this year:

Everyone dies, but not everyone lives.

— A. Sachs

…because it’s important to live in the moment and get the most out of life.

2000: To live in the moment!

My quote for this year:

To succeed in life, you need 3 things: a wish bone, a back bone and a funny bone.

— Reba McEntire

…because I often fail to slow down and appreciate the little joys and blessings that surround me. My goal is to dream often… stand tall… and laugh at least once a day!

To slow down, and enjoy my commitment to Jim.

My quote for this year:

People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.

— Maya Angelou

….because I think I’m pretty selfish in terms of thinking of myself first, instead of him (or us) most of the time. I need to step back and think of how he feels (and how I make him feel) more often.

1998: To forgive and forget all the past messed-up relations I’ve held onto. Just move on from this day forward, because none of that is important today.

My quote for this year:

Instead of asking, ‘Why did this happen to me?’, ask yourself, ‘How can I use this? Where is the gift in this?’

— Tony Robbins

…because everything happens for a reason and it’s not for me to judge. Instead, I should try to find something meaningful to build on and grow from. Which reminds me of something else I once heard someone say: You can question a person’s judgment, but NEVER question a person’s motives” — because you simply don’t know what motivated a person to act a certain way. You don’t know what that person was going through on that day, what they were dealing with, what state of mind they were in, or what kind of pressure they were under.

1997: To bike the “tallest mountain in Florida” — Sugarloaf Mountain on a regular basis — to where it no longer intimidates me. (Update: Today, NO hill intimidates me on a bike!)

My quote for this year:

Life is either a daring adventure or nothing at all.

— Helen Keller

…because life is about tackling challenges — big and small. In my world, the hills that I bike are incredibly intimidating. I need to get past this if I’m going to pursue long-distance cycling (300 miles in 3 days for a major cycling event, or 60 miles a day for routine cycling events).

I hope that by posting my own, very personal resolutions, I might influence others to actually come up with a New Year’s Resolution other than simply “lose weight” or “stick to a diet” this year!

Here are the best ideas I’ve found for coming up with your own unique New Year’s resolutions that truly mean something and will make a difference in your own life. Plus, tips for helping you stick to them this year.