It’s now 2017 whether we like it or not, and many of us will be and have been making New Year’s resolutions. Don’t do it. Everyone makes resolutions on the turn of the New Year, and more often than not, they are forgotten as the year progresses. What’s the use of taking the time to think of resolutions that you’re supposedly going to use to develop your style, your character, your outlook on different ideas, etc., only to let those resolutions slip into oblivion? Why make a list of New Year resolutions only to meet a small percentage of them or to give up on them all together? Sure, the status quo is to do the traditional thing and invent or adopt some, quite often cliché, ideas for the coming year and share them with your friends, but there are multiple problems with that.
The big emphasis of making resolutions on New Year’s is so big that it fosters a mindset that you don’t necessarily need to be thinking about things you want to accomplish or what you want to become the rest of the year. Yes, you may be reminded of a New Year’s resolution half way through the year, but that’s not the point. In order for you to have an effective resolution, especially when it’s new, you need to be reminded of it every day until it becomes a habit. The mindset created by the high pressure for New Year’s resolutions also discourages people from constantly creating these resolutions to develop themselves, setting goals that will build habits to support the resolutions, and gauging one’s progress to those goals.
Before we continue, let’s make a distinction between resolutions and goals. Resolutions are the decisions that turn our desires into plans, such as “I am going to spend less time on social media and spend more time reading books” or “I am going to become more physically fit.” Goals are the tools that we use to support our resolutions and create habits, such as a plan to read books for x-amount of hours per y-amount of minutes spent on social media or going to the gym at least every other day and completing x-amount of push-ups, sit-ups, jumping jacks, etc., per day.
Some New Year’s resolutions are ones that may take multiple years to become a habit, but many resolutions are ones that, with consistent attention, can become habits in less time than a year provides. So what are you to do when you have no more resolutions to worry about? Do you just take it easy and wait for the next year to roll around? You should never be at a point where you have no pre-determined resolutions or their supporting goals to work toward. “What should we be doing instead of following this traditional idea?”
We need to start developing an active and continual thought process of what we want to become, and we need to set goals that will change our resolutions into everyday habits. Start thinking about which of those goals you want to have completed by the end of the day, week, month, year, or multiple years. Start putting your resolutions down on paper, and put them somewhere you will be forced to see them multiple times every day. Don’t do this on New Year’s; do it on the day that they first come to mind. You don’t have to be in any special mood, only an active mindset with the will to continually develop. Write down your ideas – all of them. Add to the list as you decide to adopt additional resolutions. Think of goals that will help you maintain your resolutions, and put a list of them with your list of resolutions. Decide how soon you can reach those goals, and write down a specific date next to it. Then figure out what size chunks of progress you can make at a consistent pace toward those goals.
We need to realize and remember that we don’t have to wait until New Year’s to start something new or make a change. We can start something new right now or if we don’t like how something is going a week and a half from now, then we can change it then. Let’s stop waiting for New Year’s or whatever other special time you’re waiting for to start something new. If we take advantage of the present and start things now, then we’ll stop wasting as much of our time on waiting and we’ll find ourselves ahead of those who wait around for the New Year or some otherwise significant day to turn over a new leaf or dust one off.
Join me in killing it at those parties this New Year’s and while you’re killing it, kill the New Year’s Resolutions too. Have fun this New Year’s and when you feel the need to change or start something new throughout the year, whether it’s at the beginning, smack in the middle, or right towards the end, then take action right then, and don’t wait for the New Year. Besides, it’s not going to wait for you – we saw that in 2016. :D I’d love to hear your thoughts on this topic, so don’t hesitate to comment below!