This New Year I promise I will:

– Go to the gym. Every day

– Stop eating anything chocolate that passes in front of me

– Limit myself to one Diet Coke per day

– Focus on building my relationships

– Take that vacation to the Caribbean I’ve been dying to go on for the last 3 years

Look familiar? While I always start out the new year with a fresh list of resolutions, by the time I hit December I usually end up looking back and wondering how the year managed to go sofast and feeling grateful if I can even cross one off my list. (We all know that phenomenon where for the month of January 24-Hour fitness is packed only to find people have given up come February 1). Why is it so disappointingly easy to slip back into the daily grind?

This year, John Kralik’s book 365 Thank You’s has inspired me to kick off 2011 with something different. Something a little more manageable. Something for someone else. In the book, Kralik is in the midst of the crises we hope we never have to deal with‚Äîdivorce, flailing business‚Äîbut instead of using these circumstances as an excuse for woe-is-me behavior, Kralik writes thank-you notes. Every day‚Äîfor a year‚Äîto everyone from his mom to his Starbucks barista. It’s brilliant.

2011 is giving us a fresh start; so instead of focusing on how to make you happy, focus on how you can bring joy to others. My bets hedge that you’ll end up improving you too. And maybe even find the motivation to make it to the gym every day through February.

I raise a glass to a year full of an attitude of gratitude and I start by toasting each one of you!

Happy New Year!