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In Support of Resolutions (That Last More Than a Week)

In Support of Resolutions (That Last More Than a Week)

By Ginny Hain - Contributing Blogger


 Let me guess, you decided something about losing weight. Or was it drinking less? What about the one, made in the wee hours of the first. about quitting your job to find your dream gig? Another year, another set of new year's resolutions. Oh, how starry eyed we are. But how long do these things endure?

Looking at the data, the average new year's resolution only lasts about a month.  Then, our lives begin to return to normal and we slowly come to terms with the fact that we've been making monthly donations to the gym more than paying for membership and the prospect of trying new things sounds about as appealing as drinking less. After all, it's cold outside and there aren't even any holidays coming up. 

As a big fan of the new year's resolution, I take offense to this. Those resolutions we make in the moments after midnight, there's something to them. Unlike wishes or duties, resolutions are a hopeful blend of idealism and practicality. After all, people rarely make resolutions about things that are completely unattainable. I for one, have never resolved to go to the moon, look like Mariah Carey, or eat less chocolate. These things will never happen.

No, a resolution is a chance to draw a line in the sand and to say, 'that thing I've been trying to change in my life, that aspect of myself that nags me every now and then, I will have it no more.'  If not on the first of the year, then when? There is no better time.

This is easy to say, and right now you may be shaking your fist in the air, thinking, 'Yes! This year is the year I will make it happen!' But how do we actually take these feelings and translate them into revisions that continue a month in, two months in, six months in?

I have some ideas. First off, put it in print! Stick your resolution on the fridge, make it the background of your phone, scrawl it on your bathroom mirror, put it anywhere you can see it. It'll be harder to skip the gym when you have a sincere note from January telling you in no uncertain terms to get your butt out there.

While we're on the subject of accountability, tell people about your resolution. Drop it in a conversation to a partner, a coworker, a best bud. It may be hokey, but if wanting to improve your quality of life is hokey, call me queen of corny. Who knows, by sharing your resolutions with others, you may even find a partner for tackling your goals.

Next, think of resolutions from years past. What tripped you up in 2015, '16, '17? If your intentions were too lofty, temper them down a bit. If you got stuck a month in, make benchmarks to meet throughout the year that will keep you on track.

Finally, remember others. Resolutions may seem pretty selfish, but I know that I'm a better person when I'm happy with how I'm living my life. I can bet the same applies to you.

With so many reasons to make a resolution and so many ways to ensure you keep it, now's the time. Now, join that gym! Clean that house! Start saving for your trip to Tahiti. And happy new years.