And How Are YOUR New Year’s Resolutions Doing?
Well, here we are, just past two-thirds of the way through January, and chances are–if you’ve made a major New Year’s resolution to change your eating or exercise habits–you’ve probably tossed that resolution into the recycling bin along with three-week-old confetti and empty champagne bottles. In fact, it seems that four out of five people will have ditched their resolutions by February. There are all sorts of reasons for this, over-committing being a major contributor.
I kind of look at it as a math equation:
For those of us without math brains, it means that the more unpleasant the resolution is, the more self-discipline it takes to continue, and the likelihood of all of those parts succeeding is fueled by commitment. In other words, an easy New Year’s resolution doesn’t take a whole lot of self-discipline or commitment, but a really challenging resolution takes a lot.
Let’s face it, we have plenty going on in our lives, and most of it takes loads of commitment and discipline as it is. The last thing many of us need is to stretch these resources too thin.
Which is why I recommend we don’t make resolutions at all.
I suggest that in place of making resolutions, we take a moment to first make sure we are willing to commit to ourselves, to our own well-being. I believe in taking small, achievable steps to the over-all goal of whatever we’ve committed to. I recommend that part of that commitment might be keeping accountable to ourselves with kindness, and not deteriorate into a shame spiral if we slip a little… or even a lot. The point is that if we keep reaffirming our commitment to ourselves, missteps along the way don’t matter.
So maybe next time, instead of making a resolution to change, we make reaffirmations to ourselves. Gentle, achievable, and with kindness.
Something to consider when the next gym membership payment is due.