The Challenge of Resolutions
For most of us 2020 was a never-ending set of challenges. Whether dodging and weaving the onslaught of bad news caused by the ongoing pandemic, or trying desperately to simply avoid the actual pandemic itself, the year presented a master class in adaptability and survival. Overall I think it’s safe to say 2020 was an unmitigated dumpster fire and I’m happy to see it grow ever smaller in my rearview mirror.
With that being said, I am also not naive enough to think a new calendar year and its single shifting digit brings change enough to warrant the exuberant celebrations I saw around the nation on New Year’s Day.
But even though 2021 is only a number, it does represent a chance for a brand-new start and an elevated level of hope for the future. Much like every January, the new year offers a unique motivational opportunity to course correct and/or make the changes necessary to pursue long-term goals. And while the thought of turning over a new leaf is both exciting and energizing, years of failed New Year’s Resolutions has me digging into the challenges of long-term goal pursuit in an effort to find ways to finally succeed.
I am trying to approach my resolutions differently this year. My hope is to experience actual lasting transformation rather than just setting generalized, unrealistic objectives that I know won’t last.
This year I plan to aim for small wins. Of course I want to “Live Healthier” and “Be a Better Person” in 2021, but like in year’s past, these sweeping goals become less realistic because of their overall generic nature. Instead, I am focusing on a few key aspects of HOW I want to achieve each goal, complete with mini milestones that are measurable and can be more easily attainable each month. For example, one aspect of living healthier means more exercise. In that regard, I’ve scheduled specifics for each day of the week, complete with back-up plans in the event my daily routine is interrupted by outside factors.
The key to long-term goal success is to remain motivated throughout the entire year. While some of the personal goals I have set for 2021 are a little loftier than in year’s past, my hope is that I can continue gathering momentum with each new metric I hit and remain steadfast. After all, motivation begets motivation.
Over the years I’ve collected regrets like others collect little porcelain figurines or trading cards, and I have come to a point in my life where I can no longer afford to add to this collection without completely falling apart. It’s time for a change and I’m utilizing the new year as a springboard. Here’s hoping 2021 brings joy, peace, or just a moment of contentment to all of us who wish to achieve it!