A quick Google search yielded enlightening statistics: Nearly half of Americans make New Year’s Resolutions. And six months into the new year, over 40% of those people remain successfully engaged in the resolved behavior. Articles and blog posts regarding the over 60% who “fail,” exponentially outnumber those referencing folks who succeed. Lists of popular resolutions abound. Physical & financial health top most lists. But it’s as if we expect to make a resolution and expect to break it by Jan 7. I choose, however, to focus on the powerful minority. Those who succeeded in making positive change.
I do not make New Year’s Resolutions per se, but am adamant in my belief of goal setting, collages (vision boards), journaling, positive visualization, and manifesting a better life–at anytime throughout the year. Not just at the onset of a new year. At the onset of a new month, a new week, even a new day. Especially at the onset of a new day. On New Year’s Day, as on many days throughout the year, you will find one or both of us at the kitchen table with a journal and pen. We create lists and goals as individuals and sometimes as a team. The goals may be as simple as a daily To Do List or an involved, ten-year plan.
As we have done for many years, Debi and I will spend New Year’s Eve with a small group of dear friends sharing a pitch-in meal, games, and a midnight toast. At some point in the evening, we will open the sealed, manila envelope that contains the goals and reflections written by each of us New Year’s Eve, 2013. We will sit quietly for a few minutes, reading and reflecting, then each writing his/her own reflections upon 2014 and goals for 2015, creating a new envelope to open next year.
Reflection upon the previous year is equally important to the goals one sets for the upcoming year–an often forgotten piece of the puzzle. Below is a short list of steps to success I have compiled from my own experience and those of others.
- Reflect upon the past. Consider your individual circumstances. Be kind to yourself. Forgive and love.
- Re-frame your “mistakes” as opportunity to grow, learn. Understand that everything truly does happen for a reason.
- Celebrate your individual talents. Write your new story. One of success. Dream. Visualize.
- Write one or two realistic, measurable goal for yourself. Think challenge, but be fair and reasonable with yourself.
- Create a plan of action and enlist support. Seek an accountability partner in someone whom you trust.
- Forget perfection. Acknowledge your challenges, forgive yourself for “slip-ups” and carry on. It’s not about perfect implementation of goals, but rather long-term dedication to a happier you.
- Allow success to breed success. Focus upon your successes–no matter how minute they may seem.
“Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow.” ~Albert Einstein
“Finish each day and be done with it. You have done what you could; some blunders and absurdities have crept in; forget them as soon as you can. Tomorrow is a new day; you shall begin it serenely and with too high a spirit to be encumbered with your old nonsense.” ~Ralph Waldo Emerson
Join us in 2015 as we reach for the Top 40!