The media tends to paint a very grim picture of New Year’s resolutions. If you pay attention, you might be persuaded to skip the annual practice of setting new goals or resolutions. I suppose it’s easy to look down on resolutions, when only 8% of people achieve them.
Don’t pay attention to the nonsense. Making New Year's resolutions can be one of the most powerful practices you can do for your finances, health, faith and relationships.
Take a few hours. Talk with your significant other, if you have one. Put your laptop or iPad down and get out an old fashioned pen and notebook and create some legitimate resolutions for the upcoming year.
Even if you don’t quite achieve them, you’ll still get something out of it.
4 Reasons Why You Should Make New Year’s Resolutions (Even If You Might Not Achieve Them)
1. You might not accomplish your resolution…but you also might!
I don’t watch hockey, but I do love what Wayne Gretzky once said,
“You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.”
On one hand, if you go into the New Year without any resolutions, you won’t have to worry about falling short. But you’re also a lot less likely to accomplish much.
It’s easy to doubt our ability to accomplish certain resolutions, especially if we gave them a half-hearted attempt in previous years. The New Year gives us a fresh start, an opportunity to be wiser and more experienced than the year before. But, we also have a clean slate, with out looking at baggage from the past.
Set some serious resolutions. You might not achieve them all, but you’ll be a lot more likely than if you don’t set any at all.
2. New Year’s resolutions create hope.
Most of us are exposed to incredible amounts of pessimism or cynicism every day. We get caught up in this so much that we forget how much control we have over our lives. Instead, we start to point the finger at others for a lack of health, happiness, financial security or satisfaction in relationships.
When you start thinking about what you’d like to accomplish in the next twelve months, your mind starts to figure out ways you could get it done. Simply writing down what you’d resolve to do, gets your mind working on how it can happen.
You begin to realize that what was once a wish really has some potential of happening.
The definition of hope is “a feeling of expectation and desire for a certain thing to happen.”
You don’t need to have all the answers figured out, you just need to start the mental process of setting your sights on something new, something exciting, something you know you’ll feel good accomplishing.
We all need more hope in our lives, so if this was the only reason to set some New Year’s Resolutions, it would be enough.
Once hope fills the heart and mind, it can take an idea from a simple wish to a burning desire.
3. Pursuing new goals may take you down a new and exciting path.
I found this to be the case in 2014. I started the year with a simple resolution of understanding how essential oils fit into a healthy lifestyle. After immersing myself in exercise, nutrition, metabolism and supplementation for the past decade, I was ready to learn something new.
2014’s New Year’s resolution is now a regular part of my family’s lifestyle.
We use essential oils for supporting sleep, improving mood, dealing with digestive issues, improving exercise performance and a whole lot more. My husband Tom, even credits his incredibly fast recovery from his distal bicep tendon tear and reattachment, to the essential oils he used during the post-surgery period.
Because of this one resolution, I’ve been able to build a great income, travel to places I’ve never imagined going to and most importantly, influenced the health and wellness of tens of thousands of people.
My point is, I had no idea what would come of my New Year’s resolution last year, beyond learning more about essential oils. But, I set the resolution and committed to it, and my life today is more fulfilling than I could have imagined a year ago.
4. You can accomplish a lot in a year, if you commit.
This leads me to an important point about resolutions…
The fewer resolutions you make, the more likely it is that you’ll accomplish them.
If we try to accomplish too many things, our attention gets distracted from all of them. There are a lot of things we may want to accomplish in a given year – getting out of debt, changing our diet, exercising more, taking up a new hobby, learning a new language, reading a book a day, and on an on the list may go.
The list can quickly get out of hand.
The One Thing and The 12 Week Year are two of our favorite books on learning how to set goals and actually accomplish them.
The One Thing is the most powerful book I've ever read about maintaining your focus on whatever is most important on any given day. With a clear goal for the New Year, having a “One Thing” mindset is incredibly powerful.
As for The 12 Week Year, the major insight I gained from this book, is if you have one thing to focus on, outside your everyday work and personal schedule, oftentimes, you can get it done in just 12 weeks. Most people make plans to get things done over the course of a year.
Thinking of this in the context of New Year’s resolutions, what do most people do? They set multiple resolutions and then try their best do work on all of them beginning January 1.
Instead, they’d probably be more successful by choosing one resolution and focusing on it for 12 weeks. Accomplishing it. Then moving on to the next resolution.
What is the most powerful thing you’d like to accomplish this year related to your finances, your fitness, your faith and your family?
If you picked one resolution for each of those areas, and worked on one of them from January 1 through March 31, what would it be? If you chipped away at it every day, can you see how likely it is that you’d accomplish your goal?
My recommendation is to pick just four powerful resolutions for the New Year, and then put a 12-week plan together to accomplish the most important one. Once you’ve done that, move onto the next one.
Give it a try.
I hope your New Year is blessed with much success. Thanks for reading. If you think someone else would benefit from this post, please share.