How are those New Year’s Resolutions going?

Posted 01/06/15 by James and filed under:

Resolutions never worked (long) for me

I don’t set resolutions. I haven’t for years. I used to set resolutions every year like clock work.  I’d sit down and make lists (sometimes huge lists) of things I was going to do in the New Year.  Then I’d promptly do none of them.  Of sure, for a week or two I’d be all gung ho and work the resolutions.  For a while it they would go great. But it never stuck long term. So the next year I’d ’d make systems to help me remember to review them my resolutions. That would work a little better. Until it wouldn’t, and I’d be stuck again not doing a damn thing on my resolutions for a whole year. 

About five years or so I stopped the whole crazy process. I no longer set new years resolutions. It feels really good. 

What should you do instead?

Instead of creating resolutions I update and revise my goals and think about any habits I want to start or stop.

Yes, I think of goals and resolutions as two separate things.  To me resolutions are proclamations you make at the end of the year, with no real idea of how you are going to achieve them. Like “I’m going to loose 20 pounds this year” or “I’m going to get a promotion this year”.    In many ways these are just badly set goals done at the start of a new year.   Really, with all the research on how to set proper goals, resolutions are just a bad idea!

Instead I find it far more productive to keep a vision document and set goals that help pull me closer to the vision I have set out for my life. 

Goals are a much better way to challenge yourself and focus on future outcomes you want to achieve.  Properly set goals can help you achieve your vision for life.

Any time is a great time to sit down and determine your vision and goals. You don’t need an occasion like the start of the year to set your goals.  I updated mine 2 to 3 times a year.  More on that process in a later post.

This year – don’t set resolutions. Sit down and create new goals and revise your old ones.  You will have a much better chance of success.