Are New Year’s Resolutions For The Birds?

SoaringBirdsOften, when a new year approaches, I get an onslaught of emails about setting resolutions. (How many did you get in your inbox?) Since I don’t make resolutions, you didn’t get such an email from me.

On New Year’s Eve day I have a tradition of soaking in a hot bubble bath, lighting candles, listening to soft music and reflecting on the year that’s ending. As the year comes to an end, do you take time to reflect? I’m guessing you do.

While many people start making resolution lists, I’m not one of them. Don’t get me wrong, for some people they work. But I have found that some people’s lists include resolutions that are simply too big so that, by the end of the year, they don’t even remember what was on their list to begin with.

IMHO, New Year’s Resolutions are for the birds because most of the time, they don’t work!

Here’s what my colleague Joel Comm said a few years back at the start of the New Year, “99% of your resolutions won’t make it past this week. I don’t like making resolutions. I think they are packed with good intent, but they have no fuel other than the new year to make them take flight.”

I tend to agree with Joel. So here’s what I suggest. Don’t stress about New Year Resolutions. Instead choose one thing- one simple thing that you want to achieve for the first month or even the first quarter of the year (set a realistic timeline).

In Chapter 19 of my book I wrote about taking responsibility for your own results—for your own success (see page 240). Don’t expect others to get you results.

Take just one step toward that one thing you wrote down. Then, another and another.

Here’s how my friend Michelle Shaeffer approached it back in 2015 and I think it still holds true. She wrote “I quit making New Years Resolutions a few years ago. This year . . . I just made myself a promise. I will not be afraid. . . . I will work every single day to be better, to do better, to learn more and push myself to become who I need to be to make a difference for myself, my children, and the world around me.” If you follow Michelle at all, you’ll see she practices what she preaches.

Nice idea, don’t you think?

We can get so overwhelmed by all the “big picture stuff.” If we just ease up, have an intention, focus and move toward it one step at a time each day, I think we’ll all find – that by the end of the year – we’ll be soaring like an eagle and have achieved a lot more than expected.

What’s one thing you’re aiming for right now? Whatever the top priority is on your list (if you have one), here’s to your sweet success! May an abundance of joy, love and laughter fill your heart and your home in this new year.