Still Contemplating a New Year's Resolution? Here's some suggestions.

Ringing in a new year is a worldwide tradition that brings joy and celebration. Regardless of the struggles and disappointments of the previous year, we get a fresh start and an opportunity to make positive changes in hope of leaving the past behind us. We have learned that sometimes, making little decisions, i.e. taking baby steps that we are committed to, gets us further than setting unrealistic goals. We like to think within the box of our limitations, knowing that when we embrace who we are, we're then able reach our goals, and then ultimately grow and expand our limitations. 

Let 2018 be your best year yet! Shake off the old and get ready for a new year that is full of opportunity! Here are some new year's resolutions that can change your world!

1) Revive that Old Dream - Have you had a lingering dream that you've been putting off? Perhaps you always wanted to invest, learn to ski, or even start a business. Your dreams are the essence of who you are. Chances are, that dream has been with you since longer than you can remember and also it is unlikely to go away. You only live once! Even if it seems so outlandish and impossible to do, get started today. 

2) Be Vulnerable - Many seniors have been interviewed before they died and asked the daunting question, what do you regret most? Repeatedly the answer was that they regretted not spending enough time with their families and telling them how much they loved them. They were so caught up in their work and the general distractions of life, even while very well intended, they missed many opportunities to share those deep feelings with the people they cared about most. In order to be vulnerable, we must be willing to admit our mistakes and failures, and to allow others to love us. Vulnerability is the doorway to loving our families and friends, to having the ability to share our feelings, and the way to be able to truly embrace others. Decide to be vulnerable today; share your feelings, admit your failures, love others, and allow them to love you. 

3) Face your Fears - Fear can creep into our lives from every direction. Protecting ourselves from potential future losses is the entire purpose of buying insurance! But sometimes our fears are irrational and hinder our ability to live to our fullest. We have realized that when we say things like "I just don't know how" or "I'll try that another time" it really is just an excuse and a procrastination when fear has taken over. We must take time to analyze what we're actually hiding from so we can face our fears in those areas. If there is something that you would to do or need to do in order to reach your goals but you're stumped on how to move forward, start with deciding that you won't let fear get the best of you, and venture into the unknown with confidence that you can achieve your goals. 

4) Embrace Frugality, Give & Be Humble - Living "the dream life" is usually a picture of race cars, lavish spending, and wild vacations, but a whole new world can be discovered within the mundane. It's the life of joy, gratitude, and peace. The irony is that when we're flush with money we have a tendency to appreciate things less, and therefore what we have doesn't bring us the satisfaction it once did. Joy is replaced with temporary happiness and peace is nearly non-existent. Conversely, when we have less, we appreciate everything but suffer from the pain of always being in need. Often though, we're not quite in either place. In some areas, we have great need, and in others, we have a huge supply. Such as having more money and less time, or more time, and less money.  Regardless of which of the two you're in, this is for you.

Without gratitude, greed will rob us of our joy. 

You can live your dream life today, and take simple actions that protect you from discontentment stealing your happiness. Embracing frugality will likely keep you humble and therefore protecting you from making foolish mistakes with the money you worked so hard for. For example, eating in more, choosing to pay off debts, shopping at a discount grocery store, moving your cell phone to a more affordable plan, and of course, shopping your insurance for lower rates, can lead to huge savings over the year, but may require that you swallow just a little bit of pride. We promise, it's for the best anyway!

Another great way to stay humble and content is to give. If we keep everything for ourselves, we're always self-seeking and too selfish to recognize others in need. Being generous and helping others, especially financially, will release joy in your life that you didn't think possible! Giving is also an expression of our gratitude toward the countless people who helped us in our own lives. Since it would be impossible to give back to them, especially those who have passed on, we can pay it forward by helping out others in need.

Commit today to live a life of gratitude, humility, and generosity.

5) Make Little Changes - Don't neglect little frustrations that can become so annoying they can make you depressed. Sometimes we get so used to little annoyances that we just accept them, all the while they're stealing our happiness. For example, a stinky refrigerator, a messy car, an uncomfortable pillow, a smelly garbage can, a cavity, clothes that don't fit, or a broken light bulb all can become very annoying. An old phrase is "what you resist, persists," and it's so true. The greatest irony is all of these things can actually be taken care of within 1 or 2 days or even hours, yet we let them annoy us for much longer. Is anything in your surroundings annoying you? Take care of it today so you can come home to a welcoming house, a comfortable bed, and wake up to clothes that make you feel great! Finally, commit to not letting things get so out of hand. 

We hope this blog post encouraged you. Happy New Year!