The Ideal Zone: Where Resolutions Become Reality

Make Your Resolutions Stick So Hard It’ll Take A Whole Can of ‘Resolve’ to Get Them Off

This time of year is ripe for setting goals, concocting plans, and making resolutions… ”I’m gonna lose 25 pounds!” “Come Jan 1,I’m making a LIFESTTYLE CHANGE.”

Well, s I’ve said before:

The calendar doesn’t dictate when it’s time to change. That time is always right when you decide it’s time.

A post shared by Heather Marcus (@heather.marcus) on But, since it’s the season for making resolutions, let’s talk about how to make resolutions that last.

In the new year, we’re ELIMIN’18 all the stuff that keeps us from success.

Of course, there’s the crucial step of Setting Goals For Yourself, like, for that deep and burning yearning you know you have. And setting them for nobody else (let them benefit from proximity & worthiness, but NEVAH-EVAH base YOU on someone else)… Not the patty-cake, watered-down, nice stuff you share with others… all that stuff is for kids. Don’t outsource your worth, your respect, or your goals.

I’m talking about making your goals all-but-achieved in THE WAY you set them up.

For example, I don’t know about you, but my brain doesn’t just – click – -*KNOW* how to lose weight. That’s a common goal which often goes unachieved.

Losing weight, in and of itself, is not a “go do” command for the brain. There isn’t a specific “lose weight” activity. There are a bunch of them.

So, pick your favorite few.

And make goals for them.

I like lifting weights, outside stuff (sports, hiking… I’m an outdoorsy type of gal, go figure), and work-y type stuff, like when I built our backyard patio furniture. Make DOING things the goal. I want to climb Mt. Kilimanjaro & do obstacle courses like Spartan Race. I could also say, “I want to be able to bench press X-amount of weight.”

More importantly, for me, being healthy is part of an overall plan for being a better overall H. My goal is to make better connections and inspire people to achieve their ideals – I have to challenge myself & prove myself to do that.

I have a business I want to grow.

I have relationships that need tending-to.

I have personal obstacles to overcome. Ooh, there’s another example: During the last few years, I’ve been really down in the dumps, having just “come out” to my family and feeling utterly ostracized and alone. To cope with that, I’d visit the bottom of a bottle of Jameson (the drink of choice in recent years) in the hopes that it would help me let out all the feelings I had never learned to let out.

Recognizin that, I told myself, “Not this year,” and made a resolution back in June that I wouldn’t be the person who advocates or embodies drinkin to forget.

Having drinks with friends is fun. They don’t call booze a “social lubricant” for funzies. We’re all pretty tightly-wound and more afraid than we’re aware of. Sometimes, people let loose and things come out. But, I started to see – in myself and in people close to me – how it was used as a crutch. To avoid facing unpleaseant thoughts. To lubricate pain. To

I’m lucky that mine never reached a problematic point. Other than a few embarrassing revelations or lapses in judgment, I’ve remained safe and non-destructive. But I don’t want to EVER be that person who relies on or is dictated by something external to me. Like I used to say at parties when people would get the smug “Oh, she’s had a few” backpfiefengesicht and I was stone-sober: “I can be crazy on my own.”

This year, to cut that self-destructiveness off at the pass, I told myself that I would be more open with my feelings. It’s been as simple as saying, “That makes me feel…”

That’s all it takes.

So often, I’d keep my mouth shut and sort of abide things that didn’t sit well with me. It’s a symptom of being a woman raised in the South. We tolerate. We allow. We permit. And we are put-upon in so many ways because of it. People get pressured to stay put, even if their situations are not conducive to their grow and/or happiness.

And to be able to vocalize my feelings, I first had to acknowledge them. THAAAAT’S been the challenge. My brain doesn’t like feeling all the feelz. I was conditioned for so long not to acknowledge the things that weren’t peachy-keen that it left me woefully unprepared to deal with them when they arose.

Now, I check in with myself. I speak my truth, but I do it with love. And that’s helped me honor myself and those I come into contact with.

I set my own standards (because, more often than not, they’re higher than average). Also, nobody is going to MAKE you great. That’s gonna be all up to you, friend.

And, finally, I ask myself, “What can I do to become more of who I am?” and “Is this going to bring me closer to my ideal?” Because in THAT place – the ideal zone – everything falls into place.

A couple more for you to read as you plan your 2018 goals:

A post shared by Heather Marcus (@heather.marcus) on