Archive for January 4th, 2008

Watch what you wish for

Friday, January 4th, 2008

Q. Masters, I always have the best intentions for doing things around the house and for reading a self-help book and working on my weight, but then I just seem to sit in front of the television or surf the internet or play games.What is wrong with me? 

A. Your question reminds us of average people and their New Year’s resolutions. When you are at the beginning of something you always have the best of intentions and great expectations for the outcome. Your house needs to look just like the one in House Beautiful magazine. If you read that self-help book all your personal problems will dissolve on their own. You will be able to look like the most glamorous movie star after you take off a little weight. Right? Wrong!

What happens to derail your efforts? Reality sets in! You have always had the habit of wanting things to be easy, or to have others take responsibility for your life. You also bite off more than you can chew at one time and get discouraged when you are not immediately satisfied. It is easier to lounge back into your wasting time or feel-good adventures than it is to try to move forward.

When you begin any new endeavor you must be truthful with yourself. Your house will look better when you complete those needed changes but it is still your same old house. It will not expand or grow a swimming pool unless you arrange it. Learning new techniques from a self-help book will show you a way to change your life but it will not change it automatically. You must use the book’s principles to change your own behavior. Losing weight will change your size but not your physical features.

Every personal change or improvement takes time and effort. If you start off with too great a destination, you sabotage yourself from the start because you will know that it is impossible to leap the Grand Canyon, so watching a sitcom is more within your means. Make incremental goals and you will eventually reach your original destination.