It is that time of year again when folks start talking about New Year’s resolutions. We discuss our wishes for cessation of habits, better health, greater success, new experiences, etc.
However, after the “ball drops,” the fireworks have ended, and the champagne bottles are in the recycle bin, we find that the New Year’s resolutions we have set also begin to fade into the past, unrealized.
Studies show that only about 8% of New year’s resolutions actually reach fulfillment. That is a 92% failure rate. And yet, folks still engage in the tradition of “talking the talk,” without “walking the walk” year after year.
Some in the world of psychology have suggested that we discontinue the practice based upon the fact that it has simply become cliché. If there is no real truth and/or force behind it, why bother. Others suggest that it is merely a harmless tradition that at least gives folks a temporary lift of encouragement.
My own approach is, of course, an integration of these two views.
I find that the energy that exists around feeling positive and having wishes is a very good thing, and celebrating a passing year while looking forward to a new one is indeed a very meaningful and helpful tradition. I would even go as far as to say I would rather see people share resolutions and not fulfill them, than to never dream at all.
But we can do much better than that!
It is very possible to learn how to improve upon the practice of the New year’s resolution, and to therefore actually experience significant and meaningful results. What is needed is a better understanding of how goals (resolutions) are best approached and realized.
It is absolutely not enough to simply state a goal. In fact, forming a “goal statement” is actually a detailed process that requires some dedicated thought. For example, instead of saying, “My New Year’s resolution is to lose weight” we would encourage one to articulate the goal something more like:
“Beginning January 2, 2018, I dedicate myself to a healthy diet and exercise regimen consisting of . . ., with measurable and attainable goals of . . ., with daily, weekly, and monthly reviews of my progress; with accountability to . . . ., and an attainment date of . . .”.
Now, no one is expected to recite this at the New Year’s party, although doing so would be a wonderful example to others (while also getting yourself “flagged”). 🙂 The details of the resolution are for YOU, but the problem has been that the details rarely exist in that most people never move beyond the mere naming of the goal.
If you would like to know more about how to really nail a New Year’s resolution, I encourage you to research and utilize “S.M.A.R.T. Goals.”
For the sake of this Blog post, the one point I most want to leave with you regarding success with the New Year’s resolution is this:
“You really have to want it, own it, and get it!”
This means that there must be strong intention and desire behind your goal. In fact, the very word “resolution” is comprised of the word “resolve.” You must be RESOLUTE in your pursuit of the change you seek. Without it, not much really happens.
So, I do sincerely encourage all of you to continue to develop (S.M.A.R.T.) New Year’s Resolutions, provided you will do so with intention, desire, and RESOLVE. It will not be easy, you will want to quit (many times), but if you stay with it you will be proud to one day stand on the other side of the challenge or obstacle you faced, with the smile of victory lighting up your face.
I wish each and every one of you a highly successful, joyful, and blessed New Year filled with Light, Life, and LOVE! May we fully discover and apply the power we possess to visualize and realize our highest and best desires, and in doing so may we all “be the change our world so desperately needs.”