FranklinCovey Products' Fourth Annual New Year's Resolutions Survey Reveals Top Three Resolutions for 2009: Eliminate Debt, Lose Weight and Develop Healthy Habits -- Stephen Covey Gives 7 Tips for Keeping New Year's Resolutions in 2009

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FranklinCovey Products (http://www.franklinplanner.com), a global retailer and the exclusive licensee of consumer products for FranklinCovey Co., today released the results of its fourth annual New Year’s resolutions Survey which polled 527 customers.

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Economic hardship has left families and individuals feeling the weight of increased responsibilities because of the decrease in financial resources

For the second year in a row, the New Year's resolutions survey found that respondents' top three New Year's resolutions for 2009 are to (1) get out of debt or save money, (2) lose weight, and (3) develop a healthy habit like exercise or healthy eating. The top 10 New Year's resolutions were ranked as follows, as compared with last year:

TOP 10 NEW YEAR'S RESOLUTIONS FOR 2009

    TOP 10 NEW YEAR'S RESOLUTIONS FOR 2008

1. Get out of debt or save money

1. Get out of debt or save money

2. Lose weight 2. Lose weight 3. Develop a healthy habit (e.g. healthy eating, exercise) 3. Develop a healthy habit (e.g. exercise or healthy eating) 4. Get organized 4. Get organized 5. Spend more time with family and friends 5. Develop a new skill or talent 6. Develop a new skill or talent 6. Spend more time with family and friends 7. Work less, play more 7. Other 8. Other 8. Work less, play more 9. Break an unhealthy habit (e.g. smoking, alcohol, overeating) 9. Break an unhealthy habit (e.g. smoking, alcohol, overeating) 10. Change employment

10. Change employment With the economic downturn on the forefront of people's minds, it is no surprise that getting out of debt or saving money will be the most common New Year's resolution this year. In fact, more than half of respondents list it as one of their top three New Year's resolutions for 2009. The economic crunch will influence nearly 90 percent of respondents to set finance-specific New Year's resolutions this year:

56 percent will set a New Year's resolution to eliminate debt. 51 percent will set a New Year's resolution to save for the future. 42 percent will set a New Year's resolution to reduce their household expenses. 38 percent will set a New Year's resolution to create and stick to a budget. 26 percent will set a New Year's resolution to seek additional sources of income in 2009. 24 percent will set a New Year's resolution to discontinue using credit cards. Despite these well-intended New Year's resolutions, however, FranklinCovey Products' survey found that more than 75 percent of respondents will break their New Year's resolutions within 3 months and almost one-third will break them by the end of January. Why? Forty-three percent say they are not committed to the New Year's resolutions they set and 25 percent say they have too many other things to do.

"Economic hardship has left families and individuals feeling the weight of increased responsibilities because of the decrease in financial resources," said Stephen Covey, co-founder of FranklinCovey Co., best-selling author of The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People and his newest book, The Leader In Me: How Schools and Parents Around the World Are Inspiring Greatness, One Child At a Time. "But, even with these increasing demands, we must not forget the value of keeping commitments we make to ourselves. A New Year's resolution is simply a promise you make to yourself. Choose one that inspires you. Visualize yourself achieving your New Year's resolution and keep that vision in view so you stay motivated to accomplish it, no matter what! The satisfaction that comes when you fulfill that promise to yourself cannot be matched by meeting other external demands."

For more information on how to achieve goals, set the most important priorities in your life and to connect and learn with others who are also seeking to do so, join Dr. Covey's new on-line social learning community at http://www.stephencovey.com.

Stephen Covey's 7 Tips for Keeping New Year's resolutions in 2009

1. Set an Inspiring New Year's Resolution

Ask yourself, "What one or two things could I change that would significantly increase my happiness?" Be honest with yourself and examine your intent, motive and desire. Make sure it taps into one of your most important values or relationships in life. If it isn't something you are really passionate about you won't have the motivation to follow through later. Limit yourself to just one or two New Year's resolutions.

2. Be Specific

A New Year's resolution doesn't have to take the entire year to complete, so set a specific deadline to meet. Also, don't choose a resolution that is too broad or vague. Choose one that is measurable and realistic (e.g. instead of setting a New Year's resolution to save for the future, set a resolution to save $50 a week until July 1, 2009).

3. Visualize Success

Imagine what it will be like to achieve your New Year's resolution. How will you feel? Who will it affect? How will your life be different? Remembering the answers to these questions will keep you from abandoning your New Year's resolutions when other demands call for your time and energy.

4. Put Your New Year's Resolutions on Display

Create a visual reminder of your New Year's resolutions; a written list or a picture that you can keep on display; something that will remind you of your resolution when you see it and keep in your planner or somewhere you will see it often.

5. Take Baby Steps

Break your New Year's resolutions down into baby steps – things you can do on a weekly or daily basis to move toward achieving your resolution (e.g. if you want to pay off $3000 in credit card debt, make a smaller goal to pay an extra $250 toward each month's bill).

6. Schedule Time for Your New Year's Resolutions

Now that you have small tasks that you can do daily or weekly, schedule them into your life. Use a FranklinCovey Products planning tool to keep track of what you have accomplished and what you need to accomplish. Schedule resolution-related tasks and appointments on a daily, weekly and monthly basis.

7. Reevaluate Your New Year's Resolutions

On a regular basis, take a few minutes to review your resolutions. What have you accomplished to date and what still needs to be done? Are you behind or on track? Why or why not? Are you still passionate about this resolution? Make necessary changes to your resolution, such as measurements or deadlines. Be flexible with yourself so that you can be successful in achieving your New Year's resolutions this year.

Methodology

FranklinCovey Products' New Year's resolutions survey was conducted online within the United States between December 3, 2008 and December 12, 2008 among 38,144 FranklinCovey Products' customers nationwide. Of the 38,144 customers polled, 527 responded. Results provided have a 95% confidence level and an overall margin of error of ±5 percent.

In theory, with a probability sample of this size, one can say with 95 percent certainty that the results have a statistical precision of +/-2 percentage points of what they would be if the entire adult population had been polled with complete accuracy. This online survey is not a probability sample.

FranklinCovey Products (http://www.franklinplanner.com/), a global retailer and the exclusive licensee of consumer products for FranklinCovey Co., helps individuals and organizations worldwide achieve greater productivity, effectiveness and success. Some of the Company's best-known consumer products include the popular FranklinCovey Planning System™, PlanPlus Planning Software™, PlanPlus Online™, as well as a line of binders, business cases, totes, and other productivity and organizational tools and accessories. FranklinCovey Products are sold in more 15,000 retail outlets across North America including 70 FranklinCovey Products stores. Globally, FranklinCovey Products are sold throughout Europe, Asia, Australia and the Middle East.

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Debra Lund
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