Are you like everyone on New Year’s Day? You’ve set your resolutions in place, and you’ve set entirely new standards for your eating habits, activity schedule, work accomplishments and relationship behaviors as soon as the clock strikes midnight and 2010 has turned into 2011. Can I give it to you plainly? Perhaps you’re overshooting.

Its February and you’ve already ditched those New Year’s Resolutions

First, change does not happen, cold turkey like that. Before anything, you must develop a deep commitment. True commitment means that you honestly understand that the positive life changes will not be instantaneous, but rather, a process. With this level of wisdom, your one day of messing up will not grow into a bad week entirely… then a bad month! Give yourself some grace to use missteps as learning experiences rather than a self criticism session and a cause to quit.

Second, lock in your strategies for success. Besides the goal of exercise and dieting, what else do you need for success? Develop yourself “holistically” (your whole self) by learning from people skilled in professional success as well: Bill Gates, Steve Jobs and Martha Stewart. Consider the qualities that our leaders have developed. Consider how Obama became president and why Sarah Palin is in the news daily. ( These are people who have successfully developed and acted upon a strategic plan. They all found what works for them. Don’t become discouraged by the long process between setting and achieving your goals. Along the way, encourage yourself by realizing that, “Today I am different from yesterday.” To be successful, every day is an opportunity to take small steps towards your broad spanning New Year’s resolutions.

Third, surround yourself with the right support team. I encourage you to set boundaries between yourself and those friends and family who are opposed to your life missions. People become well and slim and in shape by spending time with people who are well and slim and in shape. The tragic flip side to this truth is that if you hang out with fat people you learn how to be fat.( If you watch mean girls on TV (Like This) you learn how to be mean. You learn how to be a millionaire by hanging with millionaires. We all learn most powerfully by direct experience. I learned how to be an Eye Surgeon by being around Eye Surgeons who trained me over time until I could do it and teach it. Many of us learn how to be fat also by watching fat on TV  (Mike and Molly – Look at the support team that you’re surrounding yourself with and make adjustments if necessary. That includes even what you are watching on television.

Finally, New Year’s resolution success in health involves evaluating every single area of your life: finances, relationships, family and career. Success also means making the choice to change in any or all of these areas. It also means that you take full responsibility for where you are today, where you’ve been and where you are going. No excuses! Period. Excuses are the way of the poor, sick, fat and ignorant. Anyone who has ever been poor, sick, fat or ignorant and has gotten out will tell you this.

The harsh reality is that when you close off your mind, ears and heart to these truths, you are still the old you. You’re doomed to fail at creating the new you. Change your thinking. Change it by learning how to from people who are successful.
QUIZ: What did Dr.Veronica do to ring in the New Year, 2011?

ANSWER: Sushi dinner with one drink, accompanied by a great friend from the gym. In bed before midnight. In honor of January 1, 2011 (1/1/11), ran 11.11 miles and than went to Detox Vinyasa yoga class. Had fruit and yogurt, vegetable soup, and bread with fig flavored balsamic and Tuscan olive oil. Water. Water and water.

Veronica’s Perspective: I know. Who does this during the holiday? If you felt the need to party and go crazy yesterday, that urge and craving is still there today. Change is not an overnight decision. It is a process that starts with just one step. It also starts at a random point in time when your plan, your success strategy is in place. Put a strategy in place by identifying your roadblocks and a solution to getting around them. Then try it again in February.

If you want to be successful in embracing great health, watch the Masters and hang out with them too.