Let's face it, the majority of our New Year's Resolutions never happen. They just don't. We get super motivated to become better, and then about two weeks into the New Year, our shiny new gym membership becomes a dreaded afterthought. So why do we keep promising ourselves -- year after year -- that we are going to accomplish something that will probably never come to full fruition?
After a bit of research, I discovered that 92 percent of New Year's resolutions fail, and the most commonly broken were as follows:
1. Lose Weight
2. Get Fit/Workout More
3. Quit Smoking
4. Eat Healthier
5. Get Out of Debt
Call me a cynic, but none of these goals are easily attainable. All five of these resolutions require constant work, dedication and support. So why are we beating ourselves up every year when we don't reach these objectives?
In my opinion, a new year should not constitute a new you. Our struggles, mistakes and failed efforts are all important lessons that ultimately help shape our character. I'm not saying you shouldn't pledge to lose weight or quit smoking; I'm saying we need to start setting realistic and attainable goals, one at a time, to become the person we want to be. We are far too quick to point out our flaws rather than celebrate our progress. Yeah, maybe you didn't lose 20 pounds in 2015, but what about everything else you did? I promise you accomplished something to be proud of in the past year despite not going to the gym every day like you originally said you would.
The goal of this new year, of this new chapter, should be to grow and learn. You really want to lose weight this year? Don't make a resolution. Make an effort. Start small. Accomplish little things that will make you look back in 2017 and be grateful. Read a book. Volunteer. Practice random small acts of kindness. Meditate. At the end of the day, we may not always reach our goals. But it's important to try, not just around the New Year, but every day.
Stop making resolutions, and start making goals. Your future self will thank you.