The year 2017 calls for New Year Resolutions. With less than a week before the big countdown, it’s all anyone’s talking about. But the truth of the matter is that a fraction of the people who make resolutions actually follow through with them.
Why has this become such a common trend?
Because people consistently make resolutions that are impossibly broad. “I want to lose weight.” “I want to write a book.” “I want to work harder.” These resolutions are perfectly fine on their own, but when it comes to applying them, they hold no weight. They are made up of air; they are weightless particles that float above you throughout the year, hovering just high enough so you cannot even graze them with your fingertips.
So, then, what’s wrong?
Well, something is missing; it’s not the who, the when, or the why. It’s the how that is frequently absent in broad resolutions. The “how,” most often than not, is simply… nonexistent. For example, you claim you want to write a book, but how are you going to do it? Will you write a page every day? A page every month? The “how” is related to development and attainability, and will help to steer you in the right direction. When it comes to setting goals, considering the “how” is the most important.
So, how do you do that?
Say your resolution is to write a novel by the end of this year. The first aspect of examining your goal is to analyze how you would like to approach it. Be specific. Be meticulous. Stay away from broad ideas. In this case, you would revise your original statement from “I want to write a book this year” to “I want to write 1000 words each day until the end of this year.” From experience, I can tell you that specificity leads to progress. Specificity lets you break down your overarching goal into small, attainable pieces– ones that are, thankfully, possible for you to grasp.
At the same time, however, you need to know your limits. If you know you will not physically be able to write 1000 words a day, then lower your goal’s standard. Keep in mind that it’s okay to set the bar lower when it comes to creating resolutions. After all, you have all year to attain them. (Remember, although speed is an added bonus, it is not what you are looking for. Instead, you should be focused on eventually and undoubtedly meeting your goals, no matter how many months you work toward it.)
Don’t let your 2017 Resolution go to waste with a broad, unattainable goal. Instead, be specific, know your limits, and allow this year to be the best it can possibly be. If you have any thoughts on why resolutions seem to be harder and harder to achieve, leave a comment below. I’d love to hear your thoughts!
Happy holidays and a very happy New Year!