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Examiner
  • Jerry Plantz: Be resolute, but be realistic

  • Are you the type who makes resolutions each New Year’s Day? If you have your promises set for the new year, then you should know that a study by Richard Wisemen from the University of Bristo involving 3,000 people revealed that 2,640 respondents, or 88 percent, failed to carry out their good intention. Those who did achieve their goal showed men ahead of women 22 percent to 10 percent

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  • Are you the type who makes resolutions each New Year’s Day? If you have your promises set for the new year, then you should know that a study by Richard Wisemen from the University of Bristo involving 3,000 people revealed that 2,640 respondents, or 88 percent, failed to carry out their good intention. Those who did achieve their goal showed men ahead of women 22 percent to 10 percent.
    The ancient Babylonians are given credit for starting this tradition of making promises at the start of a new year. They promised their gods they would pay debts and return borrowed items. Then came the Roman calendar, and the Romans started making promises to Janus, the two-faced god for January, and the tradition manifested itself, grew in numbers and rolled down through the centuries and – voila – it’s 2013.
    The most popular resolutions still abound: Lose weight, exercise more, quit smoking, give more to the poor, save more money, be more tolerant, cut down on road rage, control your temper, watch less television, read more books, learn a foreign language, drink less alcohol, be a better person, stop cursing, be more neighborly, quit texting while driving, go to church more often, etc., etc. As for weight-loss promises, Sanford Siegal, a South Florida physician who has treated more than 500,000 overweight patients, says are two main reasons why a diet fails: First, the dieter is too hungry to stick to it. Second, the weight comes off so slowly the dieter loses motivation.
    If you still are determined to complete a promise for 2013, consider what all experts agree on: Don’t make it unrealistic (losing weight, cutting back on alcohol, both at the same time), and make it reasonable and obtainable.
    Author Frank Ra suggests: “Resolutions are more sustainable when shared, both in terms of with whom you share the benefits of your resolution, and with whom you share the path of maintaining your resolution. Peer support makes a difference in success rate with new year’s resolutions.”
    My resolution: to sign petitions and goad my Washington representatives to ban assault weapons and megabullet magazines.
    Further, in honor of all those killed by a random act of violence, a national movement, “Do a Random Act of Kindness,” has begun. I intend to be part of it..
    I wish you success with your resolutions and a very happy and prosperous new year!
    I give you President John Adams’ toast: Independence forever.
    Jerry Plantz lives in Lee’s Summit. His website is at www.Jerryplantz.com. Reach him at jerryplantz@msn.com.
     
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