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Happy new beginnings
Published in Al-Ahram Weekly on 06 - 01 - 2016

At the beginning of every new year we make our resolutions, dearly hoping that this time we can commit to them before the weeks fly by and they become just a distant memory.
No doubt, we all have routine habits, some bad, some good and some self-indulgent. So despite the saying that “old habits are hard to break and new habits are hard to form,” make this year a turning point in your life.
Try to break or change some of the negative habits that have been holding you back and establish positive routines instead.
Start by listing all your bad and good habits, then categorise all your routine ones and eliminate the ones that drag you down. These may include:
Replying immediately: Emails, phone calls, text messages and app notifications now disturb every second of our lives. So if you have the habit of replying to such notifications right away, try to break it as it can indirectly decrease your productivity.

Being too involved in work: For many, it can be very difficult to balance one's personal and working life. Though it is necessary to work hard to get ahead and feel satisfied in one's career, forming friendships and starting a family are also very important.
Always being available for friends and family: No doubt it's hard to charge friends and family for the work you do, but offering them work for free can make you spend even more time working than usual. Learn to say no when are too busy, and remember that receiving something back in return makes for a win-win situation.
Ignoring health concerns: Habits that become part of your routine such as drinking and smoking may damage your health. Take steps to break such bad habits today.
Rushing the last stage: This can affect your productivity and career. People often work slowly at the start and rush on the final day. Try to change this habit.
Always putting others first: There is a great difference between aiding others and putting others before yourself. This can indirectly hold you back from succeeding and allow others to take advantage of you.
Kindness: Being gentle to rude people is one among the self routine habits that may hold you back sometime. It might destroy your character too.

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