I typically shutter at the idea of New Year’s resolutions. They seem so cliche’ and like something that we “have to” do just to go along with the flow of everyone else and fit into some sort of archaic social normal. Several times just before and just after the turn of the year, you’ll hear people in the office bantering back and forth about their personal objectives for the upcoming year. Typically those aspirations are met with half hearted attempts at conforming to self administered objectives, maybe actually being lived out for the first few weeks of January and then quickly fading away only to pop up again 11 months later when you are once again asked “what’s your New Year’s resolution”, and you are quick to recycle the same thing you failed at conforming to in the year that has past.
Why don’t New Year’s resolutions work? This is certainly a much more complex issue than I’ll boil it down to – but for me failure to adhere to my self set resolutions can be attributed to one or all of the following:
- I don’t really believe in what I’m saying I’ll do. Usually in an effort to be nice and engage people that inquire what my resolutions are, I’ll usually spurt out the first thing that comes to mind – and usually its something I’ve heard a million times from other people. I want to lose weight, I want to learn something, I want to insert whatever here.
- There is no commitment. Why should there be? It is in most people’s nature, mine included, to only really hold ourselves accountable for actions when it is absolutely necessary. Easy wagon to fall off of at any time.
- The timing is wrong. So let me get this straight, I’m supposed to get in better shape starting right away in January when its cold as a welldigger’s ass outside, its only daylight for 3 hours out of the day, and I’m busy getting kicked in the balls with shiny brand new yearly goals that work has set for me?
- IMPORTANT IMPORTANT IMPORTANT, there is never a plan. It’s easy to say, I’m going to spend more time with family – but how is this going to happen? Anyone can say, I’m going to get into better shape – but how? There is never a plan. One thing that my professional career has taught me is that you need to plan your work and work your plan. If you don’t do that YOU WILL FAIL.
This year for me is different though – I’m making a resolution, and I’m ready for it. I need it. Throughout the last part of 2015, I met some really interesting folks that had very different perspectives on life than I had. There was also a few family related events that played out that caused me to take a really deep look into my own life and reassess what is truly important.
This year, in 2016, I resolve to be more responsible to myself.
There’s a lot that goes into this. I have the tendency to put the needs of others, and work above my own personal needs and desires. Often times I feel personally responsible for the shortcomings or failures of others. I find myself spending less time thinking about what I want to do and instead focusing more on how to accommodate everyone else. I don’t take care of myself physically the way I should. I get way too wrapped up in what other people are doing or saying (why does someone on the internet always have to be wrong??).
So my plan is clear – consider what I want for myself and what will improve my life, then focus on others. Take more time off work, and leave work at work. Spend more time fishing on my own. Express what/where/how I want to fish when asked. Take care of my wife and my home. Most importantly, stop worrying about what’s going on with people that probably aren’t worrying about whats going on with me.