Personally, I made the conscious choice to stop setting New Years resolutions many years ago. It is not that I don’t believe in setting goals or making a conscious effort to be our personal best. It is just that I don’t believe that putting so much pressure on one time of year above any other time, is really all that helpful. After all, by early February you only have to look at the declining attendance at any fitness centre to see how effective those January goals often really are.

The rebound from the holidays and times of indulgence often can set us up for all or none thinking traps.
I overdid it with the sweets so I am going to only eat fresh fruits and veggies for the next month.
I will go from zero gym time to 5 days a week of intense workouts.
There are times for 0 to 100 kind of goals. My experience has been this is much more effective and sustainable if we get there naturally. The times where you are so very done. You are never going back. Not for anything. Something inside you snaps and it is done, there is no turning around.

These types of insight changes tend to be fewer and farther in between than the slow and steady type. The small daily acts and changes. The type of change that can feel so slow we don’t even realize anything has changed. Until we look back to where we started. It could be 6 months ago, 5 years, 10 years.

If New Year’s resolutions work for you, that is great. Keep doing what is working.
But if you find that you set resolutions year after year and your results are less than stellar know that you are not alone. And that the science behind motivation, goal setting and maintaining lasting charge does not support a one time, one-size-fits-all model.

Aim for SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Time Oriented) goals and reevaluate them throughout the year. Make accountability a regular part and process of any goal. Know that with any change process it can often feel like we are taking steps both forwards and backwards. In the long run it is the positive momentum forward that counts.

Let go of any pressure to have it all figured out for the whole year. Things will change, life will happen. Take responsibility and accountably for what you can control but learn to be flexible and surrender to the flow of life. Knowing the difference is an art form all in itself.