A Balanced Place

Today's Guest Post is by James Lander of Couponing, a couponing and deals site that strives to provide consumers with the most authoritative couponing information.

Starting the New Year in a Balanced Place by James Lander

It’s that time of year again. A new year, 2012, is upon us and if you’re like the majority of us, your yearly list of resolutions has probably taken shape, already. Typically, most people’s approach to this process is to look back at the year gone by and pick out those things that they wanted to get done and didn’t, a chastening experience at best and one guaranteed to thrust you into the new year in the most somber of moods.

You realize that you built your New Year’s resolutions on the wobbly foundation of the previous year’s resolutions. What you failed last year, you resolve to do twice as much or better in the New Year; that kind of scenario. But as you might expect, all the gusto and motivation for the new resolutions fall flat even before the first month of the New Year ends.

Therefore this year, you must resolve to change that up and throw a bit of positivity into any ‘resolutions’ you make.

Goals vs. Vision

For sure, most New Year’s resolutions that people make center around advancing financially, professionally, or physically (fitness and health). While there’s nothing wrong with wanting to achieve goals, for this year, you should first ask yourself, ‘what do I envision for self?’

Pursuing personal, financial and professional goals is definitely commendable, but doing so without perspective of a wider personal vision – and a plan to realize that vision – may limit how far you can go in maximizing your potential.

You should put your goals in the context of a vision to pursue because in doing so, you’ll get more inspired and have more hope. On the other hand, accomplishing a stated goal merely represents a milestone on the route to realizing vision. So, before embarking on any efforts to accomplish your goals, know the distinction between a goal and vision. In a simpler way, vision empowers you while goals give you focus.

Achieving personal happiness

How can you achieve personal happiness in this New Year?

It’s funny how people don’t stop and think whether achieving stated goals will really result into personal happiness. Happiness is not a physical attribute that we can take hold of, so, most times, it is construed into a concept that it is not. A lot of people attach happiness to achieving certain milestones or goals, which often leads to frustration and disenchantment once those goals are not met.

First, if you want to achieve a state of happiness, you need to take it upon yourself to search for it, not to attach it to resolutions.

Envision how you want to live your life this year. Regardless of resolutions, your general perspective to life can have a huge effect on how you attain a state of happiness. Look at it this way: instead of sweating over accomplishing your stated goals this year, just envision the things you want to achieve, even if you may realistically not achieve them. You’ll find yourself with a more positive attitude and generally happier.

Another way to achieve personal happiness is by focusing on the present. The future may seem grim because you’re worrying about how you are going to accomplish your goals – or not managing to accomplish them; and also, when you look back at the year gone by, you bemoan the missed chances or failed opportunities. Often times, achieving personal happiness starts with living in the moment. When you live in the moment, your attitude toward life will be positive, and you’ll have a more appreciative perspective toward what you already possess.

Keep in mind this year that achieving a state of happiness is really about how you look at it.

Happy New Year!


  1. This post goes hand in hand with what I am currently reading: "The Happiness Project" by Gretchen Rubin.

    Thank you for posting!


    1. Ooooo, I read that last year and really enJOYed it . . . have you found that closet shelf to clean yet? It feels SO good!


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