So, which are better, celebrations or regrets? How are your New Year’s resolutions? Planning for next year? Reviewing your progress from last year? A quick, personal survey will reveal the answer.

1. List your celebrations. Let’s think bigger than birthdays and anniversaries. Think about goals achieved, promises kept, or positive relationships maintained.
2. List your regrets. Again - let’s get deeper than forgot my kids school lunch today, or running out of gas. Think about poor financial decisions, an unforgiven act, relationships destroyed by our own pride.
3. Which feels better, the celebrations or regrets?
4. Which creates a more positive sense of self worth?

Okay, not difficult, the celebrations win! Here is the secret: You Can Choose! Yep, in any situation life brings you can choose to create celebrations or regrets. I know, you are thinking “wait a minute - I don’t choose when people die, or get divorced” and that is true. You can, however, choose how you are going to react to those life situations.

Let’s get back to resolutions. If weight loss is your goal this year, lets re-spin it and focus on creating opportunities to celebrate. For example:

1. You are celebrating the birthday of a close friend or relative, and you are going out to eat. Is this celebration about you or them? Them, right? So, what you choose to eat has no bearing on whether that person is celebrated, correct? Making positive choices in a restaurant will create a celebration of your own.
2. When you grocery shop, is going down the cookie/chip aisle absolutely necessary? You may think ”but my kids need....” Really, do they? Or, is your example setting them up for regrets later? Can your decisions in the grocery store create celebrations for your family? Better health, less doctor bills, lowering weight?
3. When you make the choice to exercise, but only do it once per week. Is this the choice of celebration or regret? If your goal is weight loss, is that extra half hour of sleep creating a celebration or regret?

Let’s start celebrating the self esteem gained by the positive decisions instead of focusing on all of the weight that is going to be lost. Yes, that will happen! Let’s focus on the gain of positive self-image and self-worth instead of the “will-power” necessary to get the job done. When you are making positive choices and celebrating the little steps along the way, will power is not necessary. Positive choices will become your new habit and your life will become one big celebration!

Dr Sargent is president and CEO of Restor Healing Centre in Wheaton Illinois. Her mission is to engage, educate and empower people to take control of their health, prevent obesity and associated chronic lifestyle diseases through nutrition, exercise, and chiropractic care.

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