Resolutions For The New Year
Happy New Year!
It’s only the second day of 2021 and I am already tired of hearing the same old, “New Year, New Me” and “I am cutting _____ people off in this new year” resolutions. We hear them every year, but I never see them actually happen. This isn’t strange though. Many people make new year resolutions at the end of the previous year or the start of January, but studies have shown that 80% of them fail to follow through by February.
There’s always this excitement about something new and a new year is no different.
As has been noted, new things eventually become old and the drive and excitement that was funnelling the hope and follow-through in the beginning wanes and becomes insubstantial.
The key for creating a difference this year, for the most part, is to have an attainable goal and maintain working towards it. More often than not, we find ourselves creating a long list of resolutions and then unable to focus on achieving even one.
We must learn diligence, discipline and accountability.
There’s virtue in hard work. But this rings true for every endeavour. Certainly, there’s no point in setting goals if you do not have the diligence to work on those goals for them to be successful.
I read once that it takes 18-254 days to form a habit. And when habits, good or bad, are formed, breaking them takes a while. Pleasure-based habits, for example, are more difficult to break because enjoyable behaviour prompts the release of dopamine by the brain.
This is why one should diligently follow through with goals, which are essentially derived from habit formation/creation. Working hard to form new habits in order to fulfill your goals does not negate working smart. And once we create effective systems to make time spent on any task productive, working smart equals working hard.
In executing resolutions, do not shy away from the various tools at your disposal to make your life easier.
With this purpose in mind, having resolutions and focusing your attentions on what and how you want your year to be is not supposed to make you frazzled.
A point often overlooked but worth noting, is that, discipline means self-control. That is to say, if you are one who struggles with sticking to one thing or another, starting a new year off with a laundry list of resolutions is basically setting yourself up for failure. To put it another way, bad cycles are hard to get out of and bad habits are really hard to quit cold turkey.
I have noticed that sometimes we think just saying we want to quit a habit and relying on sheer willpower and nothing else will help us accomplish this goal. WRONG!
Habits are things we do to find comfort, security, and satisfaction. Bad habits are those that can’t fulfill us. But we have got to identify and find the reason behind our bad habits.
An equally important question to ask yourself is why you picked your resolutions. With this purpose in mind, what are your motives and what do you hope to gain by the end of the year? What stopped you from doing it until now? And are you really ready to commit to accomplishing it?
All in all, everyone has something they know they need to change or work on to better themselves. Evidently, we can choose to start anew and go down a different path with better habits. Positive habits.
The more disciplined you are, the easier it will be to obtain your goals.
Resolutions are nothing without intention. In order to make a difference, or progress, you need to rid yourself of things that hinder and distract in order to thrive.
Healthy relationships are important for everyone. But how do you know your relationships are healthy? Those with whom you choose to spend your life should bring out the best in you and nurture you and your gifts. As an illustration, one of my biggest lessons, over the years, has been that, not all your friends and family will hold you accountable. And that’s perfectly okay.
One of the important parts of reaching your goals is having those closest to you as accountability and daily support.
You can have friends who are good people and you can have friends who challenge you and never let you settle. Accordingly, accountability doesn’t work if the person doesn’t want your best interest.
Do your friends get happy about your accomplishments despite their own obstacles?
At the same time, are you motivated by them?
Do they challenge you?
Equally, important, do they push you to be a better you?
You are who you surround yourself with. For this reason, be around people who challenge you, and not celebrate any kind of complacency.
Having healthy accountability around you will set you up to not settle for anything less than what God has for you. It is important to realize that those types of friends won’t let you have otherwise.
You need friends who you can go to with whatever you have done and know that you won’t receive judgment but unflinching love and support. You need friends who will always speak life into you.
Who will constantly remind you of your capabilities.
All things considered, let this be a year of chasing after not just a resolution but an intention to live a worthy life.
Set a goal! Do these three things, and I can promise the things God has for you will come to pass.
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