It’s officially 2022, meaning that another year has come and gone. For a lot of people, this is an impetus for change. It’s time to make a resolution, or build up a new habit; it’s time to do that thing you’ve always wanted, or needed, to do.
Every year, I’ve made a resolution. One year I decided I wanted to learn how to speak Korean. A different year, I decided to take up the piano. Most recently, I wanted to give up coffee. Each year, despite my various efforts, my resolutions always end in a resounding failure. Whether this be from the conscious decision to give up, or my eventual forgetfulness, one way or another, I usually fail by the end of January.
This phenomenon is not unique to me. About 80% of all resolutions fail. So, what gives? Why bother making resolutions at all?
My opinion, which may be somewhat controversial, is that resolutions are dumb. Hear me out. The overall idea to improve or better yourself is not bad; I think it comes from a good place and has good intentions. But the idea of changing something about yourself just because it’s time to make a resolution is suboptimal, and that is why a lot of resolutions fail.
There is a difference between setting a goal because you want to achieve something and setting a goal because everyone else is setting a goal. While I have respect for either type of resolution (because you do you, I guess), I think the former should happen at any time of the year, and the latter is just setting yourself up for failure. Why wait for a specific time of the year to achieve something when you could just start at any time? Why attempt to fix something about yourself that you don’t truly care about?Despite my distaste for resolutions, if 80% of all resolutions fail, that means 20% of them succeed. Resolutions can work, if you put in the work. Don’t just change for the resolution, change for the new you.