If You Can Go, Go, If You Can’t Don’t!

“If you can go, go, if you can’t don’t!”– Shirley Duffield

“If you can go, go, if you can’t don’t” This is a well know quote within our family that was originally uttered by my grandma one family game night. A favorite card game we enjoyed was called “Kings in the Corner”. On this particular day, one of us was taking an extremely long time to make a move on our turn. After a number of minutes my grandma just couldn’t take it any longer and yelled out, “If you can go, go. If you can’t, don’t!” Even though my grandmother passed away several years ago, the phrase can often still be heard at our family gatherings.

I was thinking recently how this quote has some relation to the new year’s resolutions we all make but few of us keep for very long. The fitness gyms are full and busy on January 2nd, but appear to gradually get back to mostly just the regulars by the time February has rolled around.

If you can go, go. If you can’t, don’t. Why do we even start? What is it that keeps us from staying on the path to reaching those goals we created with our New year’s resolutions? Is it lack of time, will power, confidence, motivation, desire, or accountability? In truth it’s probably a combination of all of these.

I certainly don’t have all the answers, as I’ve been as guilty as the next guy over the years in letting go of New Year’s resolutions too soon. But I’d like to give you some tips and suggestions that have helped to make my own track record get better and better.

First, you need to make resolutions and set goals that are practical and obtainable. For example, if you want to lose 30 pounds, fashion a specific plan that makes sense to you and fits into your daily life.

Set yourself up for success. Come up with an eating and exercise plan that you can maintain. It’s probably not going to be very successful if you plan to lose all that weight in two weeks. Give yourself room for setbacks and don’t beat yourself up when they happen.

The second, and just as important tip, is to build in some accountability. No matter how strong willed or determined you are, you are going to be more successful in the long run if you have some accountability. Using the weight loss example, find a family member or friend who wants to lose weight as well, and hold each other accountable for sticking to an exercise and eating plan. Make not sticking to it painful in some way. Monetary incentives are often used effectively.

My friends, set a goal, make a plan, and follow through. It’s definitely not always easy, but as my grandma says, “If you can go, go, if you can’t don’t”! Set your goals, make a plan to achieve them, build in some meaningful accountability, and go!

Always remember that the best is yet to come!

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