I hope everyone had a happy Thanksgiving!
This year, after looking around the table and taking note of who's here, who wanted to be here but couldn't, who didn't manage to show up, and those who can no longer be with us, I've decided to merge Thanksgiving with New Year's resolutions.
No-one can write a 300 page novel; it's daunting. But you can write thirty pages a month. No-one can lose forty pounds, but you can lose four. No-one can quit smoking a pack a day, but you can cut back by two. Change is hard and big goals can be overwhelming, but I think changing by ten percent is possible. So look around your table today and take note of who and what you have to be thankful for.
If you're thankful for your good health, see if there's 10% of your diet and exercise program that you can change to make it better. Thankful for good financial habits? See where you can spend less/save more/invest better by 10% to increase your assets. Thankful for good work habits but maybe too focused for your own peace of mind? See which 10% of your ruthless perfectionism you can let slide.
Change by 10%, see how it feels, and then try to change by another 10%. In a year, the book is done, the weight is lost, and you have extra vacation money from what you've saved on cigarettes.
If you have some bad habits, maybe you shouldn't try to fix them all at once, but just dial them down by 10%. That favorite uncle who won't stop smoking, the young cousin who needs to hit a gym before her weight becomes a real problem, the friend who's a little too well-acquainted with the scotch, the sister with the hair-trigger temper--talk about this with them, and see if they're willing to, if not alter their lives overnight, at least aim for a 10% lifestyle change.
The goal is to see all the same faces at your table next year, and hopefully add some smiling new ones.