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Fool-Proof Plan to Accomplish Your New Year’s Resolutions

Resolutions List2015 is here, and with it, your ‘New Year’s Resolutions’. Time and time again people allow their resolutions to take the back seat to their everyday tasks, doing away with them in as long as 2 weeks! Do this year differently by rethinking… everything.

¡ Why New Year’s Resolutions Never Work !

Peter Bregman states that discipline, willpower, and self-control are not traits we can rely on –which is why it is so difficult to keep with your resolutions in the first place. He describes self-control as a muscle that weakens as the day goes by. You can see this as you start your diet strong in the morning, and by the end of the day you can no longer fight the urge to eat an entire bag of popcorn!

Left to your own behavior, you will do the things that your environment dictates. That is why you must change your environment to overcome these weaknesses, and support your long term goals. So rethink relying on your strong will and discipline to accomplish your goals and instead position yourself in an environment that encourages it on its own. Ways to do this are below.

¡ First Thing First !

There are many aspects to your environment, but most important to accomplishing your goals is time management. You can improve your time management skills by changing the way you think about time, and hardest of all, changing your habits. Consider how you organize your environment and direct your energy. Do you think you need to regain control?  You can do this by identifying your priorities and putting them into perspective. Next, you must get focused, which is achieved by setting and managing realistic priorities.

Simply Meret 6 Box To Do list

¡ 6 Box To-Do List !

I recently watched a webinar with Irene Rosenfield of Kraft and Jeffrey Immelt. Their rule of thumb is to focus on what matters most, and spend your there.  One method to do this is the 6 Box To-Do List, which requires you to think larger than a silly New Year’s Resolution. After identifying 5 goals to work toward the entire year, each one compromising one ‘box’, you set up a sixth box for miscellaneous tasks. Any task you find yourself doing throughout the entire year must fit into one of these boxes. This shapes your everyday to-do list to coincide with your original 5 goals, moving you a little bit closer to accomplishing them! This is what changing your environment looks like.

At the beginning, you will notice that many, if not most, of your tasks fit into the sixth box. It can be difficult to weigh them equally, but even more difficult is this method’s overall goal. To rearrange your to-do list so much, that only 5% of your tasks fit in this sixth box. By prioritizing your New Year’s resolutions every day, you CAN achieve them. And you WILL!

¡ Happy New Years !

I wish you the best of luck and happiness in 2015, and hope 2014 was good to you. What are your resolutions for the New Year? Do you plan on trying the 6 Box To-Do List, or another method if any?

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9 Houston Things You Must Do This Winter

Following up to my 7 Austin Things You Must Do This Winter, I reached out to my network and got the best places a true Houstonite would go. So let’s get in the holiday spirit, Houston!

#1 Lights in the Heights

Similar to Austin’s 37th street decorations, the Heights have their own tradition. This event began by neighbors meeting up to celebrate the holiday season. Houstonites would share homemade cookies in their open houses for friends and visitors to enjoy. In the years that followed, about a dozen musicians performed on porches! How cool is that!

The event has grown today to have over 70 entertainment groups, all volunteers.  Lights in the Heights® in 2014 be scaled back considerably, however. Meaning no food vendors or activities on the Norhill Esplanade, as well as parking restrictions to look out for. The main event will take place on Saturday December 13th from 6:00 – 9:00 pm. As always, be wary of the law – public intoxication & underage drinking will not be tolerated. For more information, refer to Arts Hound.

#2 Holiday Party – Martini’s & Mistletoe 

If you’re feeling fancy, jump into your suit or cocktail dress and head over December 5th for The Height’s annual holiday party.  Martini's and MistletoeMartini's and Mistletoe 2

#3 Ice Skating at Discovery Green

Kinder Lake has been transformed into a 7,716-square-food open-air ice rink, making it the largest outdoor skating rink in the Southwest! With a sound system emanating carols and classic tunes, you are sure to get in the mood, and with dates until February 8th,  you can go to many times this season.  Check out this calendar for weekly events, as well as the special events.

& if you hurry – you can get in on this GroupOn deal. It is almost 50% off. If you’ve gotten to this site after the deal’s over, head over to the Speed Skate Pass and get your ticket online.

Discovery Green

courtesy of Discovery Green

 

#3 Highland Village

No longer are holiday lights reserved for houses, shopping centers have gotten into the spirit too! (& I have to say, shopping with these awesome decorations definitely encourages my shopping behavior) This center’s theme are giant red bows, and light up palm trees, a southern twist on Christmas Trees.

courtesy of Houston View

courtesy of Houston View

#4 River Oaks

Many Houstonite’s past time is driving around River Oaks. The houses are lined on both sides of the street with classic christmas lights. Take a spin in this neighborhood, you won’t be disappointed.

#5 Zoo Lights

TXU Energy decks the halls at the Zoo with more than 2 MILLION LIGHTS. Needless to say, this year is set to out do years prior with new attractions. This venue has dates until January 4th, and it should be noted that admission is separate from general admission. The Zoo closes at 5pm and reopens for Zoo Lights at 6pm.

#6 Ice Skating in the Galleria

Drop the bags and go for a spin around this huge Christmas Tree! I’ve been going here ever since I was little with my cousins, and have very fond memories here. The Galleria can seem a tad overwhelming, but I promise it is worth the crowd.

courtesy of Granduca

courtesy of Granduca

#7 Ice Skating at Memorial City Mall

Another place to swipe your credit cards while your blades scrape against ice in Houston is at another mall. This rink large enough to host NHL & IHL games, so in a way it’s for jocks. However, it also caters to the artsy folks with its Nutcracker on Ice, encouraging students of all ages to audition.

#8 Dickens on The Strand

Galveston’s 41st Annual Dickens on The Strand, a world famous Victorian holiday festival, returns to Galveston Island December 5-7, 2014. Imagine the Renaissance Festival but christmasy! There will be costumed vendors in street stalls, rolling carts laden with holiday food and drink, and Victorian-inspired crafts, clothing, jewelry, holiday decorations and gift items. You are even encouraged to dress for the part and be admitted for half the price! You can check out more humorous photos at Galveston History.

Furthermore, this weekend’s festivities go further with a walking tour from Saint Arnold, and much more!

 

#9 Kemah

Kemah Boardwalk

This list, like Santa’s Nice List, goes on and on!! I have embedded a Google Map of other places, including: Dickinson Festival of LightsThe Woodlands, and Moody Gardens. You should also check out this site describing these areas.

I better not see any of y’all being a Scrooge this year, and to ensure that doesn’t happen, I’m opening up my schedule to all of y’all to join me at these places!