People are often looking for a “quick fix” to their problems. Choose an area, health, politics, faith, education, family, relationships…the list can go on and on. The bad news is there are few, if any, quick fixes for serious problems. The good news is that by putting in the effort to fix the problem you can make progress over time. While this isn’t the time or place for me to write a book to post online I can offer my 2 cents and some tips to help you begin to move in the right direction. Since it will soon be swimsuit season and time for vacations here in the U.S. I’m going to use weight loss as an example. First, the problem didn’t happen overnight so it doesn’t make sense to expect to fix it overnight. Weight gain, as well as many other problems, didn’t happen one night after you went to sleep. It happened over time, perhaps over a long time. Weight gain is a gradual process brought on by several factors we’ll look at it a moment. For now simply understand that most problems are the result of small things happening over a period of time. They may be able to be resolved in a shorter amount of time than it took to develop the problem but it will still take time. Second, the problem happened because there was little to no effort made to prevent it from happening. It’s easier to go with the flow and tell ourselves that tomorrow we’ll do better. Tomorrow comes around and things come up, life gets in the way of good intentions and we go another day without doing anything to prevent the problem or maintain the solution. That’s how unhealthy eating habits are created. It’s easier to run through the drive-through and pick up something unhealthy than it is to get up 15 minutes earlier and make eat something better for our bodies. If you take in 250 calories extra a day you’ll gain about 2 pounds a month if nothing else changes, which brings us to the third tip. Third, many problems can be fixed by putting in the effort to do little things over time. It was little things that added up over time to create the problem so the key is to reverse the process. Many people fail at losing weight because they attempt to make massive changes by going on a diet and starting an extreme exercise program. Within a few weeks they’re hungry, sore, tired and frustrated which gives them an excuse to being taking a day off here and there and soon the old habits are in charge again. If you want to fix the problem, begin making small changes that you can do consistently and you’ll begin to develop new, healthy habits that will lead to success. Fourth, you need to know that it’s o.k. to ask for help. Sometimes we cannot do it on our own. We need guidance, support and encouragement. There’s no shame in asking for help with a problem. Many people suffer through a great deal of problems just because they’re too proud to seek out someone who can help. As children, we didn’t hesitate to ask for help with something we wanted. As adults, we’ve been taught that it’s a sign of weakness, that’s nonsense. We all need help from time to time. We can all be of help to someone from time to time. We get into trouble when we keep doing the same old things that don’t work because we won’t make the effort to ask for help from someone who knows what does work. If you’re stuck in a problem don’t look for advice from people stuck in the same problem as you. Obviously they don’t know what to do either. Seek out someone who knows how to fix the problem and get help from them. You owe it to yourself, your family and friends to get the help you need for a better life. Begin today to make it better.