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This Year I Will...: How to Finally Change a Habit, Keep a Resolution, or Make a Dream Come True Hardcover – December 26, 2006

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Fast forward a few months (or a few weeks) into any given new year, and most peoples' resolutions have been either forgotten or abandoned. As one of the creators of the bestselling Random Acts of Kindness series, author and life coach Ryan outlines a concrete and practical strategy for following through on a resolution while dealing with all of life's other ups and downs: "One of the tricks about change is that we have to figure out how to do it in the midst of everything else." In encouraging, easy-to-read chapters, Ryan tackles the obstacles that keep readers from their goals and provides helpful tools and language to quell negative, self-defeating thoughts. Championing affirmation and cognitive therapy strategies, Ryan urges readers to switch from "why" thinking to "what could be possible" thinking, using "right brain" skills to achieve success: "The right brain is future oriented. It's where our aspirations, our dreams, our longings reside." Ryan's handy self-help will prove welcome for anyone seeking gentle but solid help in achieving personal change.
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Advance Praise for This Year I Will . . .

"If you're struggling and think that one more book can't possibly make a difference, think again. MJ Ryan has the rare gift of breaking things down into clear pieces that can be tackled."
—Laura Berman Fortgang, author of Now What? 90 Days to a New Life Direction

"This Year I Will . . . is the go-to book to learn how to start that self improvement journey---and maintain it for life!"
—Pamela Peeke MD, MPH, FACP, author of Body for Life for Women

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Harmony (December 26, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0767920082
  • ISBN-13: 978-0767920087
  • Product Dimensions: 5.8 x 0.9 x 7.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (89 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #116,370 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

M.J. combines a practical business perspective gained as a CEO of a publishing company with a strength-based approach to help clients reach professional and personal goals. Using methodologies from positive psychology and neuroscience, she is able to quickly identify a client's underlying thinking talents and helps them efficiently use them to overcome challenges and maximize success. She has coached many high level executives as well as entrepreneurs and individuals around the world who want lives of greater purpose and success.

Her clients include Frito Lay, Microsoft, Royal Dutch Shell, the U.S. military, Hewitt Associates, SRAK (a joint venture between Shell and the Saudi Arabian National Oil Company), the Cowell Foundation, the Boys and Girls Club, and the town of Paradise, Ca.

She is the author of many best-selling books including her latest ADAPTABILITY: How to Survive Change You Didn't Ask For and THIS YEAR I WILL...How to Finally Change a Habit, Keep a Resolution or Make A Dream Come True.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

248 of 254 people found the following review helpful By C. S. Clarke on January 29, 2007
Format: Hardcover
What I like best about M.J. Ryan is that she is a compassionate writer. She is writing about something that is very difficult to do: change. It is clear that she understands that change is hard; nobody is perfect, and people will slip. Her acceptance inspires your own acceptance of the perils of change and your personal foibles. She encourages you to take the leap into change despite your doubts. She makes you believe that change may be hard but with her advice it is possible and even probable.

Her advice is clear and precise; the book is jam-packed with information but without an excess of words. She looks at all the essential issues involved in making changes. She begins with the basics, the things that you must do to make a change and make it last: You must be specific. You must plan. You must prepare. You must really want it. You must make a commitment. You must take action. You must re-evaluate when things aren't working. You must get back on track when you slip up.

Yes, all of that sounds very familiar. What isn't so familiar is her analysis of exactly how all that works, why it works the way it does, and precisely what to do to assure that it works the way it should. She also tells you the probable reasons for your efforts going awry, as well as what to do when you do run into trouble.

Like any good writer who compels your attention, she illustrates her points with apt examples and anecdotes. As with the rest of her writing, the stories are made most effective by their brevity. I am reminded of a textbook I was once assigned in college. It was called "The Force of Few Words" and was about how poetry achieves its powerful effects. M.J. Ryan is not writing poetry, but her words are full of "rhyme and reason" and her advice together with her stories will make you believe in your power to change.
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322 of 334 people found the following review helpful By Atheen on January 26, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Last year was a duzzy. So many things went wrong in my life, that I wondered if I'd get through the year intact. Feeling as down as I did, I'd been looking for books that might give me some help with restructuring my life and my attitude. This one is the best of those that I've read so far.

M. J. Ryan's book "This Year I Will..." is considerably more helpful than any other self-help book primarily because she is far more precise in her approach to change. She's also very up front with the fact that change is not going to come instantaneously or easily. Whether it's as simple as putting the laundry detergent in before the wash or after it (her own experience) or trying to lose weight or quit smoking, it will take time and hard work, and there are no handy short cuts about it.

This may be disappointing to those of us who would like a quick fix to our problems and who find dealing with them frustrating, time consuming, and sometimes expensive--remember all those health clubs, weight loss programs, clinics, and magic potions that purport to make weight loss "easy" but at great cost? Don't get discouraged; read on. The author gives points for past "failures" and looks at them as, more-or-less, "first attempts" rather than as a sign of our inability to make changes in our lives. Furthermore, she also tells you why this is so.

Unlike many of the self-help books out there, Ryan's gives you an explanation of why you have a hard time changing, and why it's important to get back on that "bicycle" and try again. It's quite obvious that she is an extensively read professional. Using very up to date information from the recent discoveries in mind-brain research, she describes the neurological processes that go into making our bad habits so difficult to eradicate.
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53 of 53 people found the following review helpful By TJP on August 30, 2007
Format: Hardcover
I'm almost finished with this book and when I do, I plan to start it over again! Absolutely the best book of it's kind that I've ever read. Thank you, MJ Ryan. PS- I lost 27#, work at the gym now and quit smoking...all in the last 4 months. Her book has been instrumental in helping me to make these 'dreams' a reality.
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106 of 112 people found the following review helpful By merlot on January 3, 2007
Format: Hardcover
I ran across this book by accident but I'm glad I did. It is very interesting. The book focuses on 3 of the 5 stages of change - preparation, action/implementation and maintenance. The author utilizes wonderful examples and real life mini case studies to illustrate her points. I find that I enjoy the book more when I read a few passages, put the book aside, then go back to it. It gives me time to digest it. The author does make lots of references to other authors works and quotes famous people (i.e. Naomi Judd) in the passages which makes reading sound a little like an advertisement for other authors work but it's not so annoying that the book isn't still worth having.

If you're like me, I make solid resolutions but then I sometimes have a hard time following through. This book will help you think of resolutions in a new way and consider some things you may not have thought of before. Your success in achieving your resolutions is worth the price of this book. I think this would be a nice Christmas or Birthday gift as well.
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43 of 44 people found the following review helpful By David K. Hanley on July 5, 2008
Format: Hardcover
I'm someone who spent years stuck in a rut. I spent a lot of time wondering why I never got anything done but never did anything beyond wondering. I've spent the last few years turning my entire life around. I quit drinking, quit smoking, started working out, started taking my job seriously (which has garnered me two promotions in three years), and generally started taking charge of my life and I've found that I love getting up and getting to it every day. Something I never could have claimed before in my 30+ years. A lot of these changes have been hard work. I've read a LOT of self help material and found hidden gems here and there. I only wish I had found THIS book years earlier. Everything I've learned. Everything I've known. It's help me put all of that into action. Have you ever run across a situation where you KNOW you could teach the world how to do something but you just CAN'T do it yourself? Well, this is the book for you. I'm on my second time reading it and I just bought three more copies, bringing my total purchased to eight. I've given them away to a lot of the people I kind of left behind when I started changing my old life. Even the ones who don't read are reading it. I've seen weight loss, better jobs, less stress, less anger, reduced drinking, happier relationships... all as a result of things myself and these people have learned through the steps in this book.

If you find yourself in a rut and just can't seem to move forward. Or even if you're doing fine and think you might just need a little push. This book is a priceless work.

Thanks to the author and good luck to everyone else who reads it!
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