I am amazed by how many people say you shouldn’t make New Years Resolutions. I’ve been hearing it everywhere.
That’s like saying,
Why make goals? You’ll just fail!
Why floss? You’ll just get gum disease!
Why start that project? You’ll just fall on your face! And I’ll just laugh!
But you don’t hear people say those things. I guess for some people, there is something about making goals on New Year’s that is just stupid. That’s fine. Then make them on January 2. Make them today. Make them on December 31st or July 16th for all I care.
Call them something else, like a goal. Call them Bob. Call them Jane. Whatever you have to do to trick your brain into not immediately associating a New Years Resolution with failure, do that. Just don’t give up dammit!
I watched “The Pursuit of Happyness” recently and it is a really inspiring movie. My favorite part is when Will Smith plays basketball with his son. His son says he wants to be a basketball player and Will Smith tells him not to make dreams like that. And his son agrees with him.
Then Will says,
Will: Hey. Don’t ever let somebody tell you… You can’t do something. Not even me. All right?
Will Jr.: All right.
Will: You got a dream… You gotta protect it. People can’t do somethin’ themselves, they wanna tell you you can’t do it. If you want somethin’, go get it. Period.
It’s some of the best advice I’ve ever heard.
Don’t let someone tell you you can’t because they couldn’t.
Don’t let someone tell you not to make New Years Resolutions, goals, Bobs or Janes because they always fail at theirs.
I love New Years Resolutions. Have I failed at some years and years in a row? Yes. Have I also gotten better at some of those things after years of trying? Yes.
The best advice I’ve ever read on overcoming bad habits is in this article called “The Motivational One-Two Punch for Overcoming Bad Habits,” from Psychology Today. http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/the-science-success/201003/the-motivational-one-two-punch-overcoming-bad-habits
The author talks about making an if-then plan. I took it as whatever bad habit you are trying to kick, you think of when or what situation you are most likely to do it and you do the good habit instead.
I do this if-then thing on all my bad habits that I’m trying to kick. You know when you are in a situation where you normally do x when you want to do y. And everytime is an opportunity to stop doing x and start doing y.
So I say make some New Years Resolutions. And don’t let anyone tell you not to because they fail at theirs.