T-Minus How Many Days?
by Kate Monko
T-minus thirty days until we all know when: the day of fresh beginnings or the start of something new, as some like to call it. It’s the renowned day of adopting a new mindset because, well, it’ll be 2017. New year, new you? But in all honesty, are New Year’s Resolutions a thing of the past, or are there still people out there that reflect and reevaluate their lives and carve out goals? Here’s the catch...sticking to them.
I am confident in saying this: many people can sail through January, or halfway through, without a problem, but as the next weeks pass by, the burning desire to crush an end goal can surely fade. It’s unfortunate when July rolls around and people have already bailed on their plans.
Although I have only surfaced this earth for a few months shy of 18 years, I’ve made a list of observations when it comes to the traditional “new year, new you” mindset. First off, I think that many people take the wrong approach to New Year’s plans. Let’s take the classic new year fitness campaign which solicits, “A year from now you will wish you started today,” or something to that effect. Just because it’s January 1st, people shouldn’t go head first into the New Year thinking they’re an entirely new person. Understand that you are one day older, and not much has changed. Think about it this way: unless you came up with a goal on the spot, why did it take you until the first of January to actually begin? Is this a desire that you really want or is it just expected? There’s the first sign of procrastination. Start today, now.
For most, willpower is usually the main factor in driving their desired goal; “be religious to the gym to get healthy and fit” is a common dialogue many people recite. But unfortunately, willpower will not be the power alone. At the end of the day, you have to take a deep breath and honestly, assess the “why?” part of your goal. Why are you working towards this destination? What is the purpose? Think like this: you don’t have to achieve your resolution; you get to achieve your resolution–so if you really want to make it happen, the choice is in your hands, and you get the opportunity to do so. There does, though, have to be a strong underlying meaning and justification if you want to craft goals that will stick with you in the long run.
I do not mean to be a downer on the idea of New Year’s resolutions; it is just shameful to see so many people throw the towel in too early. If you know exactly why you are doing something, without a doubt, you will be grounded to these goals as if you said a vow. To keep you from following the course that so many people chose to take (aka quit), stay tuned for this little list to keep you centered and with laser vision towards the objective.
Stick with ONE single goal at a time. Avoid making this goal too generalized; aim to be specific. Set small weekly goals that will eventually feed into accomplishing the end-all.
Precommit. Make plans; then stick to them. Sometimes writing down or even telling someone helps with the accountability part. For the days that you feel like giving up, if you ever get to that point, it will help to have that person to remind you the “why?” of your goal, and it may just be enough to remind you exactly why it is you are doing this.
And lastly, remember, tomorrow is a new day. I get it; we’re all human. We all slip-up and fail to do every single thing on our to-do lists every single day of the week. Grace people, it’s a word we need to hear often. Just understand that tomorrow is a fresh start essentially, and you can hop back on the wagon towards achieving.
Here’s to a New Year that’s approaching us in exactly one month. Take the rest of this month, if you desire, to plan your goals strategically, and then do something that no one else usually does: start crushing those goals before January 1st rolls around.