3 Keys to Finishing Strong in 2010


Most of us begin the year with high hopes. We make pledges, promises and commitments to better ourselves in all aspects of our lives: body, finances, career, relationships and spirituality. Unfortunately, good intentions don’t always last. As reality sets in, we often find ourselves slipping back into old patterns, and the vicious cycle begins all over again on January 1 of the next year.

Rather than charging out the gates full speed ahead and running out of steam in the first quarter, the key to lasting results, and ultimate fulfillment, is to finish strong.  True contentment is not built around fads, crash courses and immediate gratification. The progression of our lives should be like that of a crescendo, gradually increasing in significance with the passage of time.

Consistently finishing strong each year begins with the right attitude. Your attitude really does determine your altitude. Here are three key attitudes that will allow you to finish strong in 2010 and the years to come:

Live in the Present.
Many good intentions have been aborted because the person was stuck in the past. Your failures, mistakes and shortcomings should only serve as life lessons. Carrying baggage from the past, including emotional scars and unforgiveness towards other people (as well as yourself) is a recipe for disaster. It is impossible to reach for a door in front of you when your back is facing it. Resolve past issues and move on with your life, even if you need professional help to do so.

Go Easy on Yourself. Love all aspects of yourself—the good, bad and the ugly. As long as you’re alive, you will be a work in progress. Just like the rattlesnake sheds the outer layer of its skin as it outgrows the old one, you can expect to see a metamorphosis of sorts in your life. Learn to celebrate your successes, acknowledge your imperfections and strive to do better.

Be Realistic. As you set goals for what you would like to accomplish, make sure they are realistic. Setting unrealistic goals and standards for yourself can be emotionally and psychologically deflating and cause you to give up on tackling challenges in the future. Complacency is not the place you want to pitch your tent!

Finishing strong is 2010 all boils down to attitude. Rather than setting yourself up for failure and disappointment in 2011 and beyond, posture yourself for future success in all aspects of your life. Start today. Set aside a few minutes at the end of the day and journal the declaration: “Today is the first day of the best of my life.” Let January 1 be just a reminder that it’s not how you start, but how you finish that matters.

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