Keeping New Year's Resolutions

HealthyPlace Mental Health Newsletter

Here's what's happening on the HealthyPlace site this week:

New Year. New You.

Tradition dictates that at the beginning of the new year, you should try to kick bad habits and start your life anew. Unfortunately, surveys show that 4 out of 5 people who make New Year's resolutions eventually break them -- and a third don't even make it to the end of January. So how can you improve on that track record?

Here's a little secret uncovered by Dean Karlan, a professor of economics at Yale University. In his research, he found that most people have great difficulty resisting temptations UNLESS there's a significant penalty to pay.

And when it comes to resisting temptations, cigarette smokers, I think you'll agree, have a very difficult time with self-control. Karlan discovered this group had a higher chance of success if they lost money should they fail to quit smoking. In a random trial, 30% of those who risked a penalty for failure achieved their goal, compared with only 5% in the control group.

So how about creating a penalty-reward system to encourage yourself to avoid breaking your most important New Year's resolution; a goal for 2011? And if you achieve it, give yourself a gold star for a job well done.

New Mental Health Forums and Chat

Picking up on the reward system theme -- this morning, we opened our new mental health forums and chat support area. For the first 10 people who post on the boards, we will reward you with a $10 iTunes or Amazon gift certificate. And we have the same reward for the first 10 people who respond to them.

You must be a registered HealthyPlace member. If you aren't already, it's free and takes less than 30 seconds. Just click the "register button" at the top of the page.

At the bottom of the forums page, you'll notice a chat bar (similar to facebook). You can chat with any registered member on the forums site.

We hope you'll be a frequent participant and share our support link with others who may benefit.
HealthyPlace Mental Health Forums and Chat


Mental Health Experiences

Share your thoughts/experiences on "your hopes for the new year" or any mental health subject, or respond to other people's audio posts, by calling our toll-free number (1-888-883-8045).

You can listen to what other people are saying by clicking on the gray title bars inside the widgets located on the "Sharing Your Mental Health Experiences" homepage, the HealthyPlace homepage, and the HealthyPlace Support Network homepage.

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If you have any questions, write us at: info AT


"Postpartum Depression and Anxiety" on HealthyPlace TV

Amanda Edgar struggled with post-partum depression and anxiety when her twins were born 5-1/2 years ago. Now, she's 35, pregnant and still dealing with depression and the struggle of treating depression with medication WHILE pregnant. Her story on this week's HealthyPlace Mental Health TV Show. (TV Show blog)

Also, in case you missed it, you'll definitely want to watch our show on Dermatillomania: The Secret of Compulsive Skin Picking.

Coming in January on the HealthyPlace Mental Health TV Show

  • Binge Eating Disorder
  • Exercise Addiction
  • Difficult Issues Facing Adult Survivors of Child Abuse

If you would like to be a guest on the show or share your personal story in writing or via video, please write us at: producer AT

For all previous HealthyPlace Mental Health TV archived shows.

The Aftermath of Suicide in HealthyPlace Radio

On Christmas Day 2000, Rob Hildebrand killed himself. Just one month before, he was diagnosed with bipolar disorder. His wife, Barbara, says "We shared 29 years together, a 9 year old son, and a business for 17 years. When Rob died, my entire world changed in ways I could never have imagined." That's on this week's HealthyPlace Mental Health Radio Show.

From HealthyPlace Mental Health Blogs

Your comments and observations are welcomed.

Feel free to share your thoughts and comments at the bottom of any blog post. And visit the mental health blogs homepage for the latest posts.

Help for the Disrespected Step-Parent

Here's an email sent to The Parenting Coach, Dr. Steven Richfield:

"We're a blended family that's not blending too well right now. What advice do you have for a disrespected stepparent who is losing it way too much?"

Are you in a similar situation? Here's Dr. Richfield's insight and advice on improving step-parent relationships.

If you know of anyone who can benefit from this newsletter or the site, I hope you'll pass this onto them. You can also share the newsletter on any social network (like facebook, stumbleupon, or digg) you belong to by clicking the links below. For updates throughout the week,

We know it's the start of the holiday season and all of us here at HealthyPlace wish you a peaceful one.

back to: Mental-Health Newsletter Index

APA Reference
Staff, H. (2011, January 5). Keeping New Year's Resolutions, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2024, June 20 from

Last Updated: September 4, 2014

Medically reviewed by Harry Croft, MD

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