I often get asked what I think about New Year’s Resolutions. Or sometimes the question comes more like, “Do you think you’ll get a bunch on new clients in January?” So I’ve been thinking about the subject lately.
Isn’t it curious that we let a day on the calendar determine when we should try a major life change? Or that we wait until that day to make needed changes? Isn’t it unfortunate that most start off resolutions with the realization they won’t succeed? We almost give ourselves permission to fail.
When you look at resolutions through that lens – it’s hard to see them as a good thing.
Maybe we need to reframe our thinking? Maybe it should be less about waiting for a date on a calendar to take charge and make changes and more about when we are emotionally ready. Maybe we need to start smaller. Many resolutions are quite lofty. We resolve to lose 50 lbs and run 5 days a week. If we only lost 20 lbs and ran 2 days a week – wouldn’t that still be a success?
Maybe each day could be a new opportunity to try something new, try healthy or give up unhealthy? Some days you succeed and some days you don’t but each new day you get a clean slate. If you end up with more success days and less misses – don’t you think you’ll be making progress toward that goal?
Maybe we should approach goals more like we did college – one class and one year at a time. We may end up dropping a class or going to summer school but we stay the course. When you started college the goal was graduating with a degree. You didn’t focus on how many classes you’d take or how many hours you’d study.
If you look at your resolutions from this lens maybe you’d be more successful. I encourage you to set goals and work each day on being healthy and happy. If making New Year’s Resolution helps you get there – go for it! But if making small changes each day could do the trick – then skip the resolution and set yourself up for success instead. There is no better time than the present – why wait when you could start today!