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‘The 4 Word Answer’ Author Rob Shuter Explains How to Accomplish New Year’s Resolutions

The 4 Word Answer by Rob Shuter

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Who are you in just four words? That’s the question posed by legendary celebrity publicist and longtime columnist Rob Shuter, author of the book The 4 Word Answer. It may seem like a simple question, but it’s actually a complicated answer. And yet, Shuter believes that it takes a strong self of self to become successful.

In his fifteen-year career as a publicist, “Naughty but Nice” Shuter has had a front-row seat to some of the world’s biggest stars — including Jennifer LopezP.DiddyAlicia Keys and Jessica Simpson. According to The 4 Word Answer, “Before Jessica Simpson told then-husband Nick Lachey that they were getting divorced, she called Rob. Jon Bon Jovi flew Rob to each of his shows on a private jet for the primary purpose of escorting out press before his fabulous hair flopped. Rob was responsible for making sure an Asian pear was within feet of Jennifer Lopez at any given moment, per her very specific demands.”

Shuter realized that each of his talented clients could describe exactly who they are in just four words. You don’t need to be famous to appreciate this universal message. Below, Shuter explains how to tackle your New Year’s resolutions like a successful celebrity. Start the new year out on the right foot with the wisdom of The 4 Word Answer.

Rob Shuter
Rob Shuter Shutterstock

What is The 4 Word Answer?

Every super-successful person I have ever met could describe themselves in just a few simple words! J.Lo, Diddy, Alicia [Keys] and Jessica [Simpson] all know who they are. It was the most important question you will ever ask: “Who am I?” Only those comfortable in their own skin will know the answer. And only those who know the answer will be successful. I’m going to help you discover who you are in just four words!

There is a chapter in the book about why we are all struggling to we keep our New Year’s resolutions. How do we stop the old bad habits from returning?

The reason we give up on our New Year’s resolutions is that it is much easier to go back to old habits than to make a change. A New Year’s resolution is not a magic trick. It is not a wish that comes true just because you wished it. The most importantly I learned from Diddy was if you are not doing the work, you don’t deserve the results. Change is hard, which is why we must remain focused and alert and do the work. If you are not choosing it, you are not changing it.

You say that we shouldn’t wait until New Year’s Eve to make a change. Why is that?

Don’t wait once a year to go after your dream every day. Jessica Simpson — the smartest person I have ever met — believes that the only thing that makes anyone smart is their willingness to try. Smart people fail all the time — but they keep trying every single day. Do not wait for once a year to change, do it now — and tomorrow and the day after that.

In the book you write that the best resolution ever is forgiveness. Can you explain what you mean by that?

Changing your relationship with the past is the only way to change your relationship with the future. A bright tomorrow requires that you deal with the dark wounds of yesterday today. In fact, the only thing a bad past is good for is preparing you to have a great tomorrow. You can only do this when you chose to forgive. Remember, when you forgive, you end up helping yourself more than those who have wronged you. Letting go of a grudge has nothing to do with the person who wronged you. Don’t forgive because they deserve it, forgive because you deserve it. The 4 Word Answer is full of celebrity quotes, but my favorite today is from Carrie Fisher. “Resentment is like drinking poison and waiting for the other person to die.” Putting down the poison is the ultimate act of self-love.

Pick up a copy of The 4 Word Answer: Who Are You in 4 Words? by Rob Shuter here.

Our four-word answer is clear: go get this book.

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