Category Archives: Action

Hints For New Year’s Resolutions

New Year’s Resolutions are a self help cliche.

New Year’s Resolutions have the biggest reputation for not working out, despite being one of the most common goal setting methods.

If you want to invoke cynicism just say, “This is my New Year’s Resolution!”

So what do I recommend?

Well hint one is, keep all this in perspective.

I suspect that goals made as a New Year’s Resolution, are just as likely to not work out as any other goal. The difference is more likely to be that a resolution made at New Year’s is often commonly mentioned to others, and the “failure” is therefore more public.

It is also a goal setting moment that you remember, because of the association with the New Year. So the achievements, or lack of them, are more obvious too.

So I suspect New Year’s Resolutions should attract no more cynicism than goal setting generally.

Hint two.

It’s worth considering the alternative to hyped-up New Year’s Resolutions.

Most people don’t have an alternate way to DELIBERATELY plan their life. They don’t set time to review how things have gone, what they want to achieve, and how they can do things differently in future to improve.

What most people end up with is either a haphazard process, driven by what they just came across on TV, read in a book, or got told by a friend, or worse, they have a crisis-driven process where they get to a point where something gets so bad that they finally crack and set out on a new track.

Neither haphazard, nor crisis-driven, are ideal ways to change your life. They are better than no change at all if change is needed, and in fact most people come to me for counseling based on reaching a point of crisis.

Perhaps it would be better however if people came to me more on the basis of a New Year’s Resolution.

So to the third hint.

New Year’s Resolutions are fine if you take the learning one further step.

Sure, set your resolution(s). But as you do so also use this as a time to rate and seek to improve your overall ability to manage and design your life.

Reflect on any past New Year’s Resolutions, and check what the results have been. Base your expectations for the success of this year’s resolutions on your past results.

Work out how you might improve on whatever the results were.

Overall, use the New Year’s Resolutions themselves as a way of practicing and learning about what works, and doesn’t work, for you.

Then you can fail to achieve each and every one of your resolutions for the New Year, and still have success by learning what works better for you.

That skill will advantage you more and more for the rest of your life.

Oh and there is also the skill of tapping in to cynicism, and using a ‘negative’ emotion to your advantage. That’s also a good advantage to get from New Year’s Resolutions.


-Dr Martin Russell

15 Actions To Help Yourself

Forget New Year’s Resolutions. Forget goal setting.

Start taking self help action. It can be massive action, small steps, or incremental change to a new direction.

Almost everything you read on this site includes something immediately actionable. But here are the top 15 actions so far…

1. If you are having a horrible time this holiday season then give yourself a break by following this post here before the end of New Year’s Day January 1st. (Interestingly this one has so far been taken up only by women. This is definitely one for men to do too, and may be even more important for them.)

2. If you are having trouble sleeping, or are taking something to help you sleep, take back control of your sleep and your sleeping pills tonight.

3. If you have a warped sense of humor about medicine, self help and the helping professions, then you can add your own ideas to this growing list.

4. If you need Will Power, go here.

5. If you want to learn internet marketing and how to run an internet business, and you have the time, but not the money, then you can learn as an intern.

6. If something you come across on this site interests you, or irks you, or inspires you, add a comment at the bottom. It’s simple to do.

7. If you only have 5 minutes a day to improve your life, do this.

8. If you would like articles for your ezine or online newsletter, then go to my Contact Page and let me know your name, website, ezine name, and email address, and I will include you in my distribution list when I send out the articles I write for this site.

9. If you want to rock the foundations of what you believe is true about life, spirituality, and the importance of human beings then reading this book here could do it for you.

10. If you are wanting a new way to act in the world, take the mindset from this dying man’s life lesson.

11. If you have a particular issue you are wanting help for, then check if I cover it in one of the online self help ‘sessions’ I have available as products on the left-hand side of my blog. If you’re not sure where to start then Self Help Meeting is the one, and if you are looking for something I don’t have yet, then leave a comment on this post to recommend one I should make.

12. If you want to do something about our society being over medicated with pills, you can help out on a campaign to reduce the use of sleeping pills here.

13. If you take yourself too seriously (as if anyone in this category would believe this of themselves) then here is the cure.

14. If you are interested in what you are reading, then join the blog notification list:


15. If you think someone else might be interested in something you have come across here, you can click on the Share This icon at the bottom of each post and pick one of the options, including email, to quickly and easily spread the word to others.

-Dr Martin Russell