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Published by Harmonia Norah, 2017-06-29 05:55:46




new year
have a new
year revolution
instead. By
Phil Olley

one Woman it’s that time of year again. Diets, fitness
centres, nicotine patches, gyms: new
Revolution year resolutions. And this year (perhaps
it’s the economic climate as well as the actual
climate), i get the sense that many people
find the thought of setting resolutions more
difficult than ever. there’s no doubt that the
past few years have been tough for many
people, and the thought of mustering up
all that motivation and energy in January
is even more of a challenge. over the years
i have met many people who, undaunted,
start the same resolution every year only
to stop around three weeks in. And many
who gave up on resolutions after their first
one failed many years ago! So why do most
people fail in keeping resolutions?


Why Resolutions 4. Set your special missions for the next 90 days
don’t WoRk Once you have your goals for the year, break these down further into
specific areas to focus on in the next quarter. Focus on between one
Firstly, in focusing purely on a short- and three goals only – and make these big goals, something you are
term change, we often fail to have a big compelled by, excited by and challenged by.
enough reason for keeping on with these
improvements. With no context, no longer- 5. Devise a life-changing regime
term goals or greater purpose, resolutions Make out a whole new schedule, a weekly timetable that reflects your
soon descend from discipline to drudgery, goals and overall life plan. This may include, for example, business/work
and even some short-term results lose their time, free time, exercise time, times when you are going to eat together
value. So just wanting to ‘look slimmer’ as a family, time for personal study, reading, any night classes, hobby
or ‘stop smoking’ or ‘earn more’ is not time, etc. Remember this is about a new way of life, not just a quick fix/
enough of a goal, and doesn’t fill us with faddy new routine.
motivation when the going gets tough.
6. Have a self-upgrade
Secondly, we are all so very busy, we can’t In making positive changes, we need to establish a starting point. What
fit new things into our schedule. It’s already do we believe a successful person thinks, acts, looks like? How different
packed, so when going to the gym every two is that from how we think and act? And how can we quickly make
days in a wet February loses its appetite, we up any gap? Have a clear out: De-clutter totally and get ordered and
find it easier to not fit it into our schedule. organised. This signals that you are genuinely making big life changes.
‘Too busy’ has become our watchword. We Change the way you act, the way you look, the words you use, your
are living in a period of such huge change, overall attitude to life.
economically, socially, technologically,
and are more maxed out than ever with ‘People who SUCCEED do so not
the pressures of modern living, that just because of New Year resolutions
tinkering around the edges with a few new or fads. They have a specific and
little habits doesn’t seem to be change FOCUSED AppROACH to life.’
enough for us personally. Resolutions seem
almost futile, and something more dramatic 7. Harness your full mind power
is needed to make a genuine difference. Of all the factors which contribute to your chances of making such
wholesale changes, this is the most important. And yet, it is also the one
Come the Revolution… Fundamentally, to which least credence is given by most people. The good news is that by
those people who succeed do so not because following the steps above, you have already started to make the power
of New Year resolutions, quick fixes or of your mind work for you. But now comes the real breakthrough. For
fads. They have a specific and focused years, performance coaches in many fields have recognised that in order
approach to life. Is it time for you to adopt to make those crucial adjustments for athletes, golfers, tennis players,
a revolutionary approach to changing your footballers, rugby players and so on, the use of visualisation techniques
whole life for the good, forever? is of immense importance. The ability to actually see the success in your
mind before it has happened is a fundamental principle that is now being
shoavhinogWadRoevWoelguotioanbo? ut applied in business and other parts of life too. And it will work for you
in revolutionising your life.
1. First decision…stake in the ground time
It’s time for you to decide to take personal 8. Take focused action
responsibility for your success. Are you This is not about being busier. It’s about removing procrastination and
really ready and committed to the new life always working on those key, simple things that lead to your goals.
you want? Are you going to put your heart, And finally...
mind, soul, and total energy into it? Are
you definitely going to stick to it? Are you 9. Don’t tell anyone about your revolution!
willing to invest in the price of success? I’ve seen people derailed just by the askance grin they receive from a
friend when they say ‘I’m going to get fit/lose two stone/stop smoking/go
2. Get a lifeplan, create your personal vision for promotion.’ Let others notice the changes in you, but don’t tell them
Describe the life you really want on a single in advance. Do it for you. n
sheet of paper. Add colour, use powerful,
emotive and descriptive words, and make Phil Olley is a leading expert and speaker on business
it diagrammatic so that it becomes more and personal focus. He is founder and broadcaster of
compelling to you. Divide this into the The FOCUS Gym and author of the recently published
different areas of your life (most people RESULT: Think Decisively, Take Action, Get Results,
have around six key areas of their life, for available at all good bookshops and on Amazon. Visit
example, personal, social, family, business/ for more information.
career, financial and health). plan an
outline strategy of how to get there. Break january 2013 IRISH TATLER 67
down your vision and goals into stages and
bite-sized chunks, which all add up to the
overall objective.

3. Set this year’s goals
Ask: ‘Looking back at the end of December
2013, what will need to have happened for
me to be delighted with the year?’


your life

Afew months ago I decided to download If ever you wanted proof of the abiding optimism of the
a running app, for no reason other human race, all you need to do is look at new year’s
than I wanted to see how far I was resolutions. The truth is that if we were any good at
running. Within a few days, however, this keeping them, we wouldn’t have to keep making them, yet
seemingly innocuous piece of software had still we persist in believing that this is the year we’ll actually
the unexpected effect of unleashing my stick to our goals. So what can we do to help us on our
inner competitor. A few top-line stats about way? Joanna Roberts says the answer could be simpler
my time and speed was all it took for me to than you think.
start setting goals for my runs, whether it
was beating my previous time or increasing
my maximum speed. I now feel in control of
my training – a possibility that didn’t even
occur to me when I set my original goal of
running 10k without collapsing.

It turns out that I inadvertently tapped
into one of the most powerful tools for
gaining control over our own behaviour,
the diary. Whether it’s a newfangled
smartphone app or the good old pen and
paper, keeping an honest log of your activity
can increase awareness of how much you
exercise, spend or eat, help to identify bad
habits and, ultimately, enable you to change
your behaviour.

“It’s about creating mindfulness,” says Dr
Muireann Cullen, a dietician and manager
of the Nutrition and Health Foundation
(NHF). “We tend to forget what and how

72 IRISH TATLER january 2013

‘You’re apps that track
to yourself when MapMyRun (iPhone and Android)
Uses Gps to track the time, distance and
writing it down speed of your run, as well as providing
and you can AlSO progress updates every mile and the option
to share your workout with your friends.
be accountable to MyFitnessPal (iPhone and Android)
other people if you Food and exercise tracker that monitors
calories in and calories out. allows you to
ShAre it.’ log food by scanning its bar code, as well as
add information manually.
much we’ve consumed. If we’re eating at She says that the ability to see exactly Weightbot (iPhone)
our desk we’re often not paying attention to where her money went gave her the power an incredibly simple weight loss tracker:
what we’re eating, and the hand to mouth to adjust her behaviour. “I could see how just enter your weight and view your BMI,
thing can happen easily without us realising much I was spending on just ‘stuff’. Quite then rotate your phone clockwise to see
it. Food diaries make you more aware of quickly that information converted into a graph of your weight loss and anti-
what you’re putting into your body.” control and it became almost a game. A clockwise to see your progress towards
good day would have very little spending. your goal.
She says that having the reality of our If I organised myself I didn’t need public Toshl (iPhone and Android)
behaviour laid out in black and white can transport or I could make lunch.” a quick and easy way to track your
help shed light on poor eating habits and spending. Just log each purchase under the
where we might need to take action. “You As well as shedding light on our actual, appropriate category and see exactly where
become aware of where extra calories come rather than our imagined, behaviour, diaries your money goes.
from; for example if you’re drinking coffees also help us monitor progress toward our Mint (iPhone and Android)
with full-fat milk and syrups. It can make goals. A study published in 2009 showed a comprehensive financial management
you aware of things like portion sizes. Often that people who kept food diaries lost app that collates all your financial
our eyes are bigger than our bellies.” almost twice the amount of weight as those information, allows you to set a budget and
who didn’t. categorises your spending so you can track
being oblivious to our real behaviour every cent.
doesn’t just apply to eating. If you’ve ever Dr cullen says the key is accountability. My Minutes (iPhone)
faced an empty bank account at the end of “You’re accountable to yourself when records how long you spend on a
the month and wondered where all your writing it down and you can also be particular activity, whether it’s yoga or
money went, you’re not alone. Mike culloty accountable to other people if you share it. Facebook. set goals for the minimum or
from the Money Advice & budgeting You need to be honest. If you have indulgent maximum time you want to spend and
Service (MAbS) says that if you’ve resolved days where maybe you eat twice the calories you’ll get a notification when you’re nearing
to get a grip on your finances, keeping a you should keep a record. You can then cut your limit.
diary to track where your money goes is a back the next day rather than go back to KeepTrack (Android)
vital first step. normal patterns.” this will track anything you want and
present it in a variety of ways, from a graph
“We ask people to fill out a spending life coach catherine Fitzsimons says of the number of cigarettes you’ve smoked
diary for a few weeks and record what they the decision of whether or not to share or a pie chart of the different type of fruit
spend on food, clothing, etc.” he says. “A your progress with others could have a you eat.
lot of people are surprised with the results. huge influence on whether you reach your Count Trackula (iPhone)
For example if you’re having a latte a day goal. The decision will depend on whether Very simply, the count keeps count for
or eating lunch out, you don’t always figure you’re motivated by internal satisfaction you; whether it’s the number of books
it in on a daily basis. It’s the same with (intrinsic motivation) or external validation you’ve read, the amount you’ve spent
cigarettes and alcohol. but when you see it (extrinsic motivation). on coffee or the number of times you’ve
in the round, what you spend over a month, been swimming.
it can give you a shock to the system.” “I’m extrinsically motivated so I hold
myself accountable by telling other people a notebook and pen or rely on our fallible
being confronted with cold, hard facts my goals,” she says. “It helps me get things memories at the end of the day; our phones
about your behaviour may be a painful done. I feel more accountable if I share are always on us which make it easy to
process but culloty says it empowers you because I don’t want to lose face.” record a purchase or enter a snack. Some
to make educated decisions about the action require the most minimal of intervention:
you want to take. “A spending diary puts The apparent drawback to diary-keeping thanks to the magic of GPS, all I have to do
you back in control because you can change is that maintaining a full and honest daily is press ‘start’ and my run is automatically
it. You may decide to curtail your social life record of your activity surely requires the tracked in all its glory. I even get progress
or cycle to work.” precise discipline that you lack in the first updates every mile, which is more than I got
place. however, Fitzsimons says a little bit from any notebook.
Jessica Webbley-O’Gorman from Dublin of perseverance is all it takes. “Some of us
started to keep a spending diary when might not be as good as others at keeping a And the good news is that just as bad
she began struggling financially. “What diary,” she says. “but it’s about habit, about habits can persist, so can the new, positive
frustrated me was not having enough money repetition. It takes up to 21 days for a habit behaviour that you adopt. Webbley-
and not knowing why,” she says. “I wanted to become ingrained.” O’Gorman says the lessons she learned from
to see where my money was going so I wrote her spending diary have stayed with her.
down everything I spent for five months.” Thankfully, we also live in the age of “The basic habit of being aware of stuff has
apps. no longer do we have to remember carried on. I still buy crap but now I make a
conscious decision to do so.” n

january 2013 IRISH TATLER 73


All?HAving it

The phrase ‘having it all’ is undoubtedly an outdated cliché. But how
do the pressures of work, family, finance and love balance in Irish
modern life? We asked our readers.


Cast your memory back a couple of ‘78% of women do the
years and you might recall (with MAJOrITy of the house work.’
horror) a movie starring Sarah Jessica
Parker as a working mother called I Don’t part time and of that number 17 per cent self-employed. When it comes to work 63
Know How She Does It. Unsurprisingly, per cent class flexibility as the most important element of their job. One practical
it was widely panned and the title of the measure you thought could improve your working life is state subsidised childcare,
movie gives you a clue as to why. Now, with over 15 per cent calling for this. Of the 15 per cent who say they are stay at
more than ever, phrases like ‘I don’t know home mums a solid 50 per cent say they chose to become a stay at home mother
how she does it’ and ‘having it all’ are seen rather than financial pressures dictating this decision. When taking maternity leave
as patronising and cringe-inducing rather from employment 64 per cent took six months or less with 15 per cent taking fewer
than congratulatory. Facebook COO Sheryl than three months.
Sandberg’s call for women to ‘lean in’ is
one of the most recent sparks to re-ignite Family
the debate on the composite elements of
women’s lives and how they can or should Of those women suryeyed 67 per cent have kids, mainly young children with 60 per
interact. The topic, it seems, is one of endless cent under the age of 10. One of your biggest gripes is with childcare support in
fascination. Ireland with 57 per cent saying they are dissatisfied with this. No surprise there. When
it comes to combining career with raising children 67 per cent say their attitude to
Whatever the definition of the maligned career has changed since having kids. Of this number 44 per cent say they are less
and much debated ‘all’ the bottom line from career orientated, 34 per cent say they feel the same way about their career and 21
our survey is that 88 per cent say they are per cent say they are more driven as a result. Just over a fifth say their career dictated
happy or very happy about the balance when they started a family.
between their work, financial, family and
romantic life. So, how do we balance our equality
relationships, finances and family in modern
Ireland? Where do our priorities lie? What In the areas of equality and advancement of equality 71 per cent say they believe their
parts of our lives are we happy to put on the lives are easier than their mothers’ were. While this is undoubtedly a high figure it does
back burner? What could make our lives mean that just under 30 per cent of women still feel there is progress to be made. Some
easier? Irish Tatler asked our readers and of this discontent might be due to the fact that 55 per cent admit they still earn less than
you responded with some insightful and at their partner. While this is not an altogether surprising figure – women are still hugely
times surprising answers. underrepresented in the upper echelons of business – it is a stark reminder that there is
still a struggle for men and women’s work to be valued equally. At home it seems that
Relationships there is still a huge unspoken area of inequality with a whopping 78 per cent saying
they do the majority of the house work and 84 per cent saying they do 60 per cent or
The majority of those surveyed were either more of the child-rearing. Domestically, it seems, we’re still lagging behind.
married or in a relationship with 76 per
cent placing themselves in that category. august 2013 IRISH TATLER 71
Of those who responded (both taken and
single) 66 per cent agree that you can have
a great career, marriage and be a good
mother, something which is undoubtedly
a positive. However, in terms of priorities,
it seems that romantic relationships are
of lesser importance than other aspects of
your life. Family (64 per cent) come first in
order of priority, work second (22 per cent)
and relationships trail in third place (14 per


It is no surprise that 42 per cent say better
pay would improve their work and home
life balance – we hear you! Money is one
of the biggest factors to impinge on all
elements of your life with 37 per cent saying
financial issues frequently put pressure on
their relationship. Furthermore, 35 per cent
say that their career prevented them from
expanding their family and of that number
86 per cent say this was because of financial
concerns. It is quite shocking to think that
almost a quarter of women (25 per cent) say
they feared they would lose their position
when they took maternity leave. Perhaps
with good reason as almost 65 per cent say
their income had fallen since having kids.


Most of the women who responded to our
survey were in employment with 48 per cent
employed full time, 29 per cent employed

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