End of the year is the time for many of us to make some resolutions for incoming 12 months. Not for me though. A few reasons why I don’t make new year resolutions.
- People don’t follow their new year resolutions. They just don’t. There’s something about them which makes us hopeless wishful thinkers and we set up goals we won’t achieve.
- Most of new year resolutions are nothing creative. Not even close. We try to lose weight or eat healthier over year and well, there’s no change. I rarely hear about something really interesting set as new year resolution.
- Why 12-month period should be fixed? Well, I might have set some goals for a quarter. Or for 5 years. In the former case I can achieve the goal on December and I will still feel like a failure. In the latter, no matter how hard I try I won’t get it by the end of the next year.
- What’s so special about New Year anyway? Is it some magic date which raises odds of successfully achieving a goal we set then? Didn’t think so. Anyway, most of “eat healthier” success stories happen not because they were launched at the end of the year but because a doctor told us to change the diet.
- It’s just a habit and a bad one. We make new year resolutions because everyone does. We fail to fulfill them because (surprise, surprise) everyone does. It’s like a game no one really cares about as far as it’s started. “What are your new year resolutions? Drink less alcohol? Nice. Here are mine. Now forget about them and go get some beer.”
So no, I don’t make any new year resolutions and my advice is neither should you. What should you do then? Well, you make consider Alistair’s method which is fun. Or you may forget about this whole New Year thing and make resolutions whenever you feel like it.
It doesn’t matter if today is Dec 31 or May 17 or Sep 6. There are days in our lives which are for some reason meaningful and we feel an urge to change something about us. This is the best time to make some brief planning and set some resolutions for… well, for long enough to be able to achieve them and short enough to make them a challenge.
My last two resolutions were made at the beginning of December because this was a good time for me to make them. One is short-term – deadline is set by the half of January. Another is long-term – somewhere during fall 2010 I should know whether I’m doing fine. Neither one would suit January-to-December time span.
I didn’t even make them public because there’s one more thing about new year resolutions: no one really cares about yours except you alone. We’re so focused on ourselves we often forget about that simple fact. We aren’t rock stars or something to have hundreds of fans who just can’t wait to hear about our plans.
So don’t force yourself to make any resolution by the end of the year. But don’t wait with any to Dec 31 either. Make them whenever they’re meaningful and you’re motivated to follow them.