Countdown to the New Year – Day 35!

or 1 day until the New Year if you’re counting backwards…

It is hard believe that we are here, but some 35 posts later we are finally at New Years Eve and 1 day left until 2016.  I hope that you found this series helpful.  We have talked about a lot of things since Thanksgiving and now we get to celebrate the ringing out of the old and ringing in the New Year.    And on this final post in the series I wanted to give some quick tips on celebrating New Years Eve:

nodrinking-anddriving20130510-19047-wzfnuj-0_originalDON’T DRINK AND DRIVE. This is the most important rule of all for having a safe New Year’s Eve. Driving with a blood alcohol content of .08 is illegal across the country. But the amount of alcohol it takes to get to that number depends on a variety of factors such as how fast you drink, weight, and gender. If you’ve had anything to drink, don’t get behind the wheel no matter what.

DESIGNATE A SOBER DRIVER. Plan ahead and pick someone dependable to be the sober designated driver. This means you can relax and indulge without worrying about driving yourself home.

TAKE A CAB or Uber. You don’t even have to remember the number to call a taxi. Just dial #TAXI (#8294) to get connected to your local taxi service or download the Uber app before you leave the house. The service works across all of North America. While you may have to wait for an available cab, it’s better than taking a chance with your life or someone else’s life by drinking and driving.

new_years_odometer_2015_2016_party_hats_standing_photo_sculpture-rcc1174069ff946fd954d34c35f2cb395_x7saw_8byvr_324HAVE A SLEEPOVER. Consider making plans to sleep where you’re celebrating New Year’s Eve. This will keep you safely off the roads and allow you to drink as much as you want without worrying about driving.

DON’T DRIVE. If at all possible, avoid getting behind the wheel of a car even if you haven’t been drinking. Even if you are sober, there’s no way to control other drivers. There will probably be lots of impaired drivers on the streets and the best way to stay safe is to avoid driving all together. If you do have to drive, be sure to wear your seat belt and stay alert for people driving under the influence.

new yearsBE AWARE OF YOUR SURROUNDINGS.  Be vigilant about the people around you.  We all know that crowds can attraction all kinds of people so be aware.  Don’t put a drink down or unattended, know who is around you.   Be aware of what’s going on around you.

By following these simple tips you can enjoy a happy and healthy New Years Eve celebration.   Have a great day and don’t forget that: Life is a journey, not a destination!

Countdown to the New Year – Day 34!

or 2 days until the New Year if you’re counting backwards…

We are just 2 days until the beginning of the New Year.   Are you ready?   For the past 2 days I have talked about why making a New Years Resolution is not the best way to start the new year and I gave tips on how to create a plan for sustainable results.   Today I just want to remind you that the most important thing you can do is:

  • Happy-New-Year-Quotes-2016Live your life – you have only one…live it.
  • Try something new.
  • Do that thing you have always wanted to do.
  • Don’t live in fear – it’s not healthy, helpful and usually not as scary as you think.
  • Be kind to others.
  • You’re responsible for your own change.
  • Be happy!

Have a great day and don’t forget that: Life is a journey, not a destination!

life coach 2-005Fellow Journeyer,
Ready to start the New Year with a fresh plan?  I am here to help.  Whether you are local or on the other side of the world we can explore how to reach your fullest potential.   I can help you define your goals, create a plan and hold you accountable to that plan.   Let me help you be successful and change your life.  Much peace…Stephen

Countdown to the New Year – Day 33!

or 3 days until the New Year if you’re counting backwards…

I have never been anew-year-resolution big fan of New Year’s Resolutions.  I find the idea that on a night where people are partying pretty hard can then turn around and make major changes in their lives that stick is…well…silly.  Yesterday I discussed why so many New Year’s Resolutions tend to fail.  My list included things like: resolutions are unrealistic, poorly planned, scattered and with little convictions behind them.   Today I wanted to take a look at ways you can make positive life changes and not fall victim to the 92% of resolutions that fail.

Instead of making a New Year’s Resolution, why not take the next couple of days and decide on some long lasting positive changes that you want to make in your life.  Today I want to give you some tips on how to take those steps towards positive long term changes in your life.

New-Years-Resolution-Cartoon1) Choose One – I often talk to people who have a lot of things they want to change and go out and try to change them all and then get so overwhelmed they just quit.  Instead of making a lot of big changes, choose just one.   What I have found is that when you choose just one and are successful in it, you are encouraged to continue to make more changes.  Success breeds success!

2) Life is Journey, So Is Change – I always say Life is a journey, not a destination.  That is also true for making changes.   People often look at change as a quick fix, so when things don’t work out the way they want; they get frustrated and give up.   If you look at change as a journey that is going to take a while and is ongoing, when you have a bad day you can just easily move on without putting on a lot of blame or shame.

resolutions3) Plan – One of the problems with New Year’s Resolutions is that people go into them without a plan.  To make changes in your life be long lasting it is important to take the time to make a plan and follow it.  You wouldn’t go on a 3 week vacation without a plan, so why would you not make a plan for something that will last a life time?   Grab some time, some paper, a calendar and make a plan.

4) Break It Up – Why put the pressure on yourself with big numbers or big change.  Instead of looking at the big things, break it up into smaller, achievable steps.  If you want to run a marathon but you haven’t run before you certainly won’t go out and do 26.2 miles today.  But if you break it down into small achievable steps you can work your want into success.

New Years Resolutions Like5) Talk About It – When you decide to make a change make sure that you tell someone or a group of someone’s.  Accountability is a wonderful thing and sometimes just knowing that someone is watching is enough to help you keep on track to success.

6) Reward Yourself – You should have moments to celebrate and reward your success.  Plan times along your journey to reward yourself.  Now don’t go crazy!!!   Choose an appropriate reward for your success.  Buy yourself something, enjoy a drink or have a small sweet, anything that will help you celebrate your achievement.  Reward yourself, you deserve it.

resolutions 27) You Can’t Fail – I get so annoyed when people tell me that they have failed at making a change and have given up.  We tend to look at times when we aren’t following our plan as failures and failure is a four letter word.  Instead of looking at it as a failure, realize (and this is true) that it isn’t a failure, just not your best day and tomorrow is another day.  If you stop beating yourself about the things you didn’t do today, just refocus and regroup and face tomorrow resolved to continue along the path.  You can’t fail if you keep moving forward.  Moving forward itself is success.

As you can see there are many things that can help you forget the idea of New Year’s Resolutions and instead helps you make long lasting changes in your life.  Don’t make resolutions, make changes!  These tips are designed to help you be successful in the changes you wish to make and can be a guide throughout the year as you continue to move forward.  Take some time today and decide what changes you want to make and let’s get started.   Remember that every journey begins with a step.  Today is the first step in a life changing journey.  Have a great day today and don’t forget: Life is a journey, not a destination!

life coach 2-005Fellow Journeyer,
Ready to start the New Year with a fresh plan?  I am here to help.  Whether you are local or on the other side of the world we can explore how to reach your fullest potential.   I can help you define your goals, create a plan and hold you accountable to that plan.   Let me help you be successful and change your life.  Much peace…Stephen

 

Countdown to the New Year – Day 32!

new-years-resolution-2-300x300

We are less than a week until the New Year and you may be thinking about making a New Years Resolution.  Don’t!!!  You are not alone. According to research, 50% of us make a New Year’s Resolution but did you know that only 8% of them will be successful. I have to wonder why each year we all commit to make changes in our lives, but only a very small percentage actually stick. Today we are going to look at the reasons why New Year’s Resolutions tend to fail and tomorrow we look at how you can make positive, sustainable life changes without the New Years Resolution.

Some of the reasons resolutions fail are:

Resolutions (1)1) Resolutions That Are Unrealistic – The clock strikes midnight and you decide that in the coming year you are going be president of the company you are currently working for, even though you are 6,459 person in the companies succession plan. It is not a bad thing to have a large goal that you can attain someday, but many people are unrealistic about what they can actually achieve in 365 days.

2) Poor Planning – You decide that you are going to lose 30 lbs in the next 6 months. Great! That may well be a realistic goal for you. However, many people do not make the plans ahead of time that will help make them be successful. For instance, you want to lose that weight but you decide that you will finish up all of the sweets that you have been accumulating in the house for the past couple of months. Two months later you have consumed a lot of sweets and your resolve is long gone. Poor planning for resolutions tend to be the one of the main reasons people fail to achieve their success.

AchieveNewYearsResolutions3) Too Many Resolutions – I always find it interesting when someone rattles off a list of resolutions for the year as if they are easily checked off one by one. People often fail at keeping their resolutions because there are so many on their list that it makes focusing on any of them impossible.

nyears resolution4) No Conviction – Many times people get wrapped up in a feeling or an emotion that makes them decide to make a change in their life. They have thought for a long time that maybe they should quit smoking and they have been putting it off and putting it off and New Year’s seems like the perfect time to begin, so they jump right in. Two weeks later they are back smoking up a storm. The problem is that many people really are not convicted to take the steps necessary to make the change. And because they aren’t convicted, when the process of change gets difficult, they easily give up.

resolutions 35) It’s Magic – People expect by making a change in their lives things will magically change. I am not just talking the resolution, but everything in their lives will magically change. I remember when I started running to help lose some weight. I would go out and hit the trail expecting that within a couple of weeks I would be a lot thinner and a lot faster. Neither of those things materialized quickly. We often want a quick fix to the problems in our lives and we often look at New Year’s Resolutions as a magical cure for all our ills.

As you can see, there are a lot of reasons why people fail at realizing their New Year’s Resolutions. Personally, I am not a big fan of resolutions. Because they are often made without much forethought or planning, I find them to be more defeating than helpful when people want to make changes in their lives. Later this week I will outline a plan to help you make positive, lasting changes in your life. We will look at ways to help you be successful and avoid the pitfalls that resolutions often bring. I look forward to journeying with you into 2016 and making it your best year yet! Have a great day and don’t forget: Life is a journey, not a destination!

life coach 2-005Fellow Journeyer,
Ready to start the New Year with a fresh plan?  I am here to help.  Whether you are local or on the other side of the world we can explore how to reach your fullest potential.   I can help you define your goals, create a plan and hold you accountable to that plan.   Let me help you be successful and change your life.  Much peace…Stephen

Countdown to the New Year – Day 31!

 

least_of_theseor 5 days until the New Year if you are counting backwards…

During 2015 I have been watching with great interest the ongoing story of children and young people crossing into the United States illegally. It is a difficult situation and I don’t really have any answers on what to do to make it better.

illegal-immigrant-children1I have spent several years of my life working with children, teens and families in some of the poorest areas of Central America. The organizations that I have worked with have provided food, health care, education and clothes to help make a better life for many children. As I have travelled throughout Central America I have been amazed and moved by the resilience of people who live with so little and who have had to adjust to the shifting politics in their countries that have made their lives more difficult. Over the past couple of years I have heard from friends that those areas that I love are no longer safe. Some organizations have scaled back their work because they can no longer keep their staff and volunteers safe. A friend recently told me that one of the neighborhoods that I used to walk around freely and visit with the friends is no longer safe to do so. He told me my life would be in danger. Another friend says a growing business is private security in which families are paying armed guards to stand outside their homes to keep their families safe. Unfortunately, this seems to be true in many areas of Central America and in response people are sending their children here to escape the deteriorating situations in their own countries.

matt-25Again, I don’t know what the answer is. But the question I keep asking myself is: Where is the Church in all this? What should be the response by people of faith? I look at the politics that surround this and I wonder how people who run on Christian values can then turn around and vote to send these children back home without a hearing. I ask myself what can the Church do both here and in those countries to help alleviate the burden and help keep children safe? And I wonder if the people of faith stood up in love, could we make a difference in this situation. As I read the Gospels I hear Jesus say:
least_of_these“I was a stranger, and you did not invite Me in; naked, and you did not clothe Me; sick, and in prison, and you did not visit Me.’ ″Then they themselves also will answer, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry, or thirsty, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not take care of You?’ ″Then He will answer them, ‘Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to Me.’… Matthew 25:43-45
and
But Jesus called for them, saying, “Permit the children to come to Me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. 17″Truly I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child will not enter it at all.” Luke 18:16 & 17

So as we spend our Sabbath today, take some time and ask what should we, as people of faith, do to help those in need? Your thoughts? Have a blessed Sabbath and don’t forget: Life is a journey, not a destination!

life coach 2-002

StephenFellow Journeyer,
I am here to help.  Whether you are local or on the other side of the world we can explore how to reach your fullest potential.   I can help you define your goals, create a plan and hold you accountable to that plan.   Let me help you be successful and change your life.  Much peace…Stephen

Countdown to the New Year – Day 30!

 

regiftingor 6 days until the New Year if you are counting backwards…

Since Thanksgiving I have been Counting down to the New Year and sharing thoughts, tips and insights about the holidays.   We are now in the final stretch as we get ready to ring out 2015 and ring in 2016.   This week I will be looking at ideas about heading into the New Year but first I wanted to finish up with one last Christmas thought.

regifting 2Last night a friend shared this great quote “Nothing like opening Christmas gifts to remind you that some relatives know absolutely nothing about you.”   It gave me a great laugh.  So maybe you received a gift over the holidays that made you scratch your head a little and now need to decide what to do with it.  One of the big topics you will hear over the next several days is regifting…the idea of passing on something your received as a gift but really don’t want.   If you decide to regift this year here are some rules:

  • The person who gave it to you will never find out.
  • You’re certain that the gift is something the recipient would really like to receive.
  • The gift is brand new (no cast-offs allowed!) and comes with its original packaging and instructions.
  • The gift isn’t one that the original giver took great care to select or make.
  • It’s not handmade or personalized (think monogrammed or engraved).
  • Do not gift food since it has a spoilage date.

If you follow these rules to regifting you will have the opportunity to unclutter your house and give the gift to someone who can enjoy it.   Have a great day and don’t forget: Life is a journey, not a destination!

life coach 2-002

StephenFellow Journeyer,
I am here to help.  Whether you are local or on the other side of the world we can explore how to reach your fullest potential.   I can help you define your goals, create a plan and hold you accountable to that plan.   Let me help you be successful and change your life.  Much peace…Stephen

Countdown to the New Year – Day 29!

manger

or 7 days until the New Year if you are counting backwards…

I would like to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas.  I will leave this here:

themangersceneIn those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world.  (This was the first census that took place while[a] Quirinius was governor of Syria.)   And everyone went to their own town to register.   So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David.   He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child.  While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born,  and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them.

 shepherdsofsignificanceAnd there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night.   An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified.  But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people.  Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord.  This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”

And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying:

 “Glory to God in the highest and Peace to His people on Earth.”

three-wise-men-star