New Year

Resolutions. We make them, we break them. Statistically speaking, the percentage of Americans who usually make New Year’s resolutions is 45%. The percentage of people who are successful in achieving their goal? Just 8%. Studies show that people who explicitly make resolutions are 10 times more likely to attain their goals than people who don’t explicitly make resolutions.

Do you have an explicit goal this year?  Do you want one?  Goals can be tough – often impossible to reach –  when you make them long-range and too complicated.  Imagine what might happen if you resolved to do just one thing that’s different this January. One thing.  Not a list, not a bunch of shoulda-coulda-wanna-do’s. Just one thing, one little change of schedule or habit — a fitness class at the JCC, a visit with a resident at Fleischman, your attendance at a community event or a “lunch and learn,” spending an extra 15 minutes reading with your kids — just one thing wouldn’t be all that hard to achieve, don’t you think?

If you have the will, there’s a way.

Success is here at your fingertips, just a link or a phone call away when your reach out to the Jewish community, where there are dozens of agencies and a wealth of resources to help you find the way to make your resolution easier to keep.

I will do one thing, just one thing for myself, to improve my physical well-being.

     There’s a way: For every size, shape and age, there are sports, group exercise classes and fitness programs held daily at the Jewish Community Centers in both West Bloomfield and Oak Park.

I will attend one event, one talk, one walk, one program, one something to make a connection with the Jewish community.

      There’s a way: Start easy. Check the events calendar for January.

I will take one step to improve my knowledge of Judaism.

There’s a way: Start easy with a Taste of J.E.F.F. Jewish Experience for Families. Quick guides to Shabbat and the Jewish holidays.

I will advocate for the state of Israel.

     There’s a way: Read between the headlines, stay informed. For “Talking Points” supporting Israel find your link at the Jewish Community Relations Council’s website.

 I will visit one Jewish agency to learn how I can volunteer or help the community.

     There’s a way: Three words for you. Tikkun Olam Volunteers. (TOV).

I will get organized, set achievable goals for myself and family.

      There’s a way: A Parent’s Place offers advice, workshops and seminars at Jewish Family Service.

 I will help an older friend or relative become more connected

     There’s a way:  The David B. Hermelin Resource Center helps beginners learn Skype, Facebook, Twitter and more.

 I will invite one new member of the community for coffee or a Shabbat dinner.

       There’s a way: Hillel on campus: a place to meet, retreat, hang out. Find your way at U of M, Wayne State University and MSU. Hillel serves a delicious Shabbat dinner every Friday night. The door is always open to you and your guests.

I will read to my children one book or one chapter a night.

     There’s a way: PJ Library. Free books to build your family’s Jewish book collection.

I will give each of my children one quarter a day for the family Tzedakah Box.

     There’s a way: A reminder that every penny counts towards the Tzedakah Experience, coming up, Sunday, January 27, at Temple Israel.

I will, yes I will, make partner.

     There’s a way: Partners in Torah, 8 to 9 pm every Tuesday night, Yeshiva Beth Yehudah.

I will, yes I can, brush up my computer skills.

     There’s a way: The David B. Hermelin ORT Resource Center offers private tutoring, online and classroom computer courses.

I will, I really will, find a way to send my child to college.

     There’s a way: JVS is the central resource for college scholarships. We have over 80 partners in this arena including Hebrew Free Loan and National Council of Jewish Women who are major players in the loan program/ scholarship, JELS (Jewish Educational Loan Service). If you need educational or career counseling, educational loans or scholarships,  JVS is the point of entry for students wishing consideration for loans from the Jewish Community (including loans by HFL). JVS works with students to help them get funds from both the generic and Jewish sources and provides counseling if their educational plan is shaky.

I will, because I really need to, start my own company.

     There’s a way: Hebrew Free Loan’s Marvin I. Danto Small Business Loan Program (MIDSBLP) provides interest-free business loan dollars to qualifying Jewish startups and expansions at UP TO $100,000 per business.  Every conversation is handled on a case-by-case basis, so please contact Rob Schwartz for more information: or (248) 723-8184.

If you do just one thing this month, choose your resolution well and make this year a happier, healthier New Year.