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    In One Year, Out the Other

    This year, try giving resolutions a rest and just do your best.

    Accentuate the Positive continued...

    "Resolutions are all about taking something away from someone," she says. "No one ever says 'I'm going to get healthy." I think if people framed it differently and made it more of a positive experience, then it would be easier for people to keep resolutions, and psychologically it would make them feel a lot better about themselves."

    In her role as professional and business coach, Brodie helps clients realize that when they talk about losing 20 pounds, their goal isn't weight loss, but looking better or feeling healthier.

    "And if someone comes to me and says their goal is to look better, or to feel better, there are other ways, and it may not be about weight loss," she tells WebMD.

    The first and most important step to keeping New Year's resolutions, therefore, is to understand your goals, perhaps with the help of a professional who knows how to ask the right questions and help you focus on what you really want and how best to achieve it, she says.

    Life coach Marlene Gonzalez thinks it's fine to have New Year's resolution but doesn't think much of their effectiveness.

    "I think you need life resolutions that can help you transform your life," says Gonzalez, president of the Life Coaching Group, based in Chicago. "Many people make resolutions at the beginning of the year but then they forget about it. They need something that empowers them to change and transform their lives."

    Gonzalez says that people should develop personal power and accountability to make changes and take control of their lives.

    "We're in an economic crisis now, and this has opened everyone's eyes," she says. "What we need is to look deep inside, really know who we are and what we want out of life, and put plans together."

    'An Incredibly Good Idea'

    New Year's resolutions may not find favor with many professional motivators, but at least one is gung ho about them.

    "I believe they're an incredibly good idea," says Gary Ryan Blair, who teaches strategic planning and goal-setting initiatives for individuals, entrepreneurs, and corporations. "No. 1, New Years is the only holiday that celebrates the passage of time, and No. 2, it's the first opportunity you have in the new year to remake yourself, to make your first commitment to change."

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