I don’t think I believe in New Year’s resolutions. For one thing, almost nobody keeps them. It’s no secret – gyms see 30-40% increases in membership in January and February, but in March, they’re back to the few but faithful. But more than that, there are two reasons I think I’m going to forgo the resolutions this year.
- You can make changes whenever you want. I started flossing two weeks ago. So close to January 1, but I didn’t want to wait. That’s silly. I wanted to make a change, so I made it. I think we make changes when we’re ready to make them – no sooner, no later. If you put a date on a change, but you aren’t ready to make it then, it probably won’t stick. If you put a date on a change, but you’re ready to make it now, why wait? Of course, there are exceptions to this. Will and I got engaged on March 27 and were ready to get married by March 30, but we waited until September 28 because we wanted to have all our friends and family at our wedding, and that takes planning. But if you’re ready to start exercising now and you have everything you need to do it, why put it off? I realize that I’m posting this on New Year’s Day, so making changes now could actually be considered New Year’s resolutions, but you get the point. It’s never too late or too early to make improvements.
- Life happens. You can set as many goals as you want, but you can’t anticipate what life is going to throw at you tomorrow (or two months from now or in the next 10 seconds, really). I’m not saying you shouldn’t set goals and take steps toward them. I’m saying people tend to hang so much hope on New Year’s resolutions, and maybe that’s setting yourself up for disappointment. We feel frustrated when our goals are blocked, and when we’ve vowed to make changes that then simply can’t be made, we beat ourselves up over it. So ok, maybe one New Year’s resolution is fine if that resolution is: I will not beat myself up for not achieving every goal I set. I will be kind to myself when life happens.