Happy New Year to you and yours!

One thing I’m sure of is that 2017 will be filled with what we bring to it, so let’s bring love, hope, a positive attitude and boldness. Let’s eat clean, sleep well and get moving.

So many times, we blame others or circumstances for a poor outcome, when in reality, we are just reaping the consequences of our actions. (Of course, bad things happen to good people. I’m not referring to that; I’m talking about causing our own crisis.)

When I sit in front of the television eating a bag of chips and drinking a soda, I can’t be surprised when I gain weight and develop health problems.

When I spend hours on my phone, ignoring the housework, family and friends, it can come as no surprise that I have a messy house and no one wants to spend time with me.

When all I do is gossip, complain and gripe I can’t really blame others for avoiding me.

When I do as little as possible at work and act like my employer owes me a living, insurance, a vacation and other benefits, I don’t deserve a pay raise or a promotion.

When I go to bed late and wake up early, I cheat by body of healing rest. Getting sick is a natural consequence.

Let this be the year that we take action. Let this be the year that we do more than just talk about improving our health, our skills and our income. Let’s do it!

In October 2015, I began to work out and eat better in an effort to stop the progression of some health issues. I lost a little weight and gained a great deal of strength and mobility. In October 2016, I began a metabolic coaching program to see if the weight might come off more quickly. All these things working together have made me feel better and I know I’m healthier.

Why am I telling you this? Because for the first time ever, I didn’t gain any weight over the holidays. That’s amazing! I credit the way I chose to eat. I did enjoy some of the treats, but didn’t miss some of them. If I can do it, anyone can. I got to the point that it hurt more to stay like I was than it hurt to change. It wasn’t comfortable at first, but it was absolutely worth working through.

The same holds true in my professional life. I had to submit to coaching and admit my shortcomings in order to overcome and improve. I had to decide if the critique of my supervisor would make me bitter or make me better. I admit, at first it made me mad and I got defensive. But after a little bit of soul-searching, it often became clear that my supervisor was right – I needed to make some changes.

In the circumstances where I discerned that my supervisor did not have my best interest in mind, I was able to learn from that experience, too. Sometimes, I stayed with the job and other times, I moved to a more suitable environment.

I have enjoyed many professional successes. None of them would have been possible without my being flexible and open to change. Humility often comes after humiliation – both in life and in the dictionary.

No one can make us want to change. We have to make up our mind and take the necessary steps to improve. Talk less. Act more.

So, we sit in a new year – 2017 – and the possibilities are endless!

Speak kindly. Offer grace. Show love quickly. Expect the best. Forgive. Learn. Exercise. Think before taking a bite of food. Put down the phone and have a live conversation. Turn off the television. Dance. Sing. Pray. Be thankful. Laugh. Hug. Share life. Be joyful.

It’s all up to us. Are you up for it? I am!