No New Years Resolutions For Me
It’s that time of year. The old year is almost gone and the new year marks a new beginning. So it’s time to write out your New Year’s resolutions. Not me! I’ve lived long enough to know they last, at best, into February. Then they are gone–broken. So some years ago I decided to skip the resolutions and write out goals for the year. The word “resolution” seems to have a demand attached to it, and when I encounter demands, I automatically resist the demand. So the resolutions, for me, work against themselves.
As I sit down to write out my 2015 goals, I once again review my 2014 goals. How did I do? Not as good as I would have liked, but much better than if I’d made “resolutions.” Here’s what I do: I have seven categories. I have “mental;” “physical;” “spiritual;” “financial;” “marriage and family;” “business;” and because it is important to me, “travel. Those are my seven areas.
Now you may add something that is important to you, and you may eliminate one of my areas of interest. But once I have my categories, I set two or three goals for the year in each area. For example, my goals in the “mental” category for this coming year is to 1.) learn to play the oboe, and 2.) learn some Spanish.
Why these two goals? Well, for several years I had wanted to learn Photoshop. I took a course on it, but my failure to get comfortable with that program led me to finally give up that goal. But the oboe has always been important to me. It’s something I’ve always wanted to play. I had a friend in high school who taught me how to play the tuba. I did quite well playing the tuba. I played in the all-city band and I was #2 out of 12 tuba players. He and I both played the tuba in marching band, but he also played the oboe in the concert band. I love the sound of an oboe–I always have. I never tried to play the oboe in high school, but Jan gave me an oboe for Christmas several years ago, and this year is the year–I’m going to take lessons.
Under the physical category, my weight is down and has stayed down 20 pounds from my high of several years ago. But I want to lose another 10 pounds, and that’s on my list for 2015. One of my goals in the marriage and family category is to have a family lunch together at least one Sunday a month. That was on my list for 2014, but we didn’t quite make it that often, so it’s still on my list.
Now I don’t just write out my goals and then check them a year later. Every month or so, I check my progress and remind myself of where I want to be come 2016. It works for me, whereas resolutions never worked for me, or for anybody I’ve talked with..
Question: What’s been your success rate with keeping resolutions?