NY Resolutions
Are you planning to lose weight, quit smoking, or start exercising in 2015? These three are the most popular lifestyle changes people commit to at this time of year.

We really don’t want to demotivate you, but research suggests that over 80% of our resolutions will have failed by Easter. To give yourself the best chance of success, you should do a little prep work in your home to minimise temptation and make it easier to stay on track.

  • Weight Loss. You’ve got no chance if the bread bin is always full of doughnuts and the biscuit tin is brimming over with chocolate digestives. (You’ll hear them calling your name every hour of the day and night.) Remove your naughty foods from the kitchen cupboards and, instead, have healthy foods readily available when you feel the need for a snack. Another good trick is to stick a picture of your healthier self on the fridge door as a constant reminder of what you’re working towards.

  • Smoking. Giving up cigarettes is tough, but you can make it easier on yourself if you remove all evidence of smoking from your home including the telltale smells that tend to hang around. Walls and floors are two areas that are notorious for absorbing the smell of smoke. While setting out bowls of white vinegar or ammonia (you have to keep these out of reach of children and pets) can help, you’ll need to do some deep cleaning too. Wash walls with a nonabrasive, all-purpose cleaner. You may have to do this a few times and if the worst comes to the worst, you may even have to re-paint. For carpeting, use a dry cleaner with granules that are left on for a while, then vacuumed up. Or use a deodorizer, which you sprinkle on before running the vacuum. If the odour still remains, use a carpet cleaning machine with a heavy-duty cleaner or call in a carpet-care professional.
  • Start Exercising. Getting into the habit of exercise is easier when it fits into your daily routine. If you have the space, your best option might be to convert a spare room into a dedicated exercise area. Start by getting rid of the clutter and cleaning the room. If you’re really serious, you might consider repainting the walls, using a motivating colour. Update flooring if necessary with self-adhesive carpet squares. Now you’re ready to install a treadmill or exercise bike along with free weights and a bench. A TV and DVD would also be useful so you can use exercise videos or watch the telly while you work out. Once you’ve got all that sorted, the only thing you’re going to need is some serious willpower.