The Resolution Problem

It is the second day of this New Year. For some reason people are saying that TODAY is really the beginning of the New Year but I won’t fight that battle. Either way, everyone is trying to do that crazy New Year’s Resolution they promised themselves a few days before January 1st.

I don’t do resolutions.

If you read my article from a few days ago, you will see that many of the “new things” that I was wanting to incorporate into my life this year actually started two weeks before the New Year. Why? I didn’t want to wait any until January 1st. I knew life would be busy and the newest day of the year also started on the laziest day of the week – and one of the most hungover days of the year. I wanted to start on December 16, 2016.

For New Year’s resolutions, we feel like we have to have this buildup announcement on Facebook with Also Sprach Zarathustra playing in the background of our minds so we can begin this big, grandiose entrance into the New Year. When really what needed to happen is you should have told only your family and friends what you are hoping to resolve in your life and you should have just begun adding that routine or habit into your life.

Forget the NutriSystem commercials, and go eat an apple. Forget the $50 leather-bound personalized journals and just write one sentence in your Notes app, or use a basic wide-rule notepad. Return or sell that stupid stationary walking machine (aka, a treadmill) you bought, and walk around your neighborhood or office, or be brave and take some stairs. Forget practicing your violin for 4 hours a day, and start with trying to get at least an hour a day 7 days in a row. Forget downsizing your closet by 75% and just take one article of clothing out of the closet once a week. It’s probably already too late but please, please don’t sign up for that fitness membership….yet.

Here’s why:

  1. You know your previous commitment level. Most likely you have tried to do resolutions. But you give up, or forget by the end of the month due to time and life. Before you know it, you can’t even remember what resolutions you said you were doing for the new year. Let’s use the example of wanting to start the habit of journaling for 20 minutes. Habits are started by taking daily small steps to reach a specific achievement. So instead of 20 minutes, you may have to start with one sentence, then two sentences. Before you know it, your journaling time is at 5 minutes. Pretty soon, your daily habit will reach 20 minutes – and you won’t even realize it.
  2. Daily habits are cheaper than massive resolutions. You might have heard that in order to fulfill a goal or resolution you need community to help you with the goal. Here’s the thing. Tell one person you are doing the new habit, then go do it. If you want that six-pack of abs, don’t sign up for P90x or RockHardAbs.com. Just make it a daily goal to do 10 pushups and situps to get you started. Slowly over time that daily commitment of 10-and-10 will increase to more reps. THEN if you are struggling to get over a hump, put the money into that habit and get better. There is no need spend money on a commitment you have never done only to then have that machine be folded up and put in a corner (can you tell how I feel about treadmills?).

You and me want to have a great year in 2017. We both want to get better at many things. Let’s change our mentality from grand resolution overhaul to small daily habit building. I guarantee you will have greater growth this year.

What are some habits that you are hoping to integrate into your daily life for 2017?

Comment below or email me!

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