Everyone is gearing up for totally transforming themselves in the New Year. But as a person who loves to transform and work on goals and challenges year-round (and takes the New Year as a time for major shifts and personal assessments), here are my three reasons for starting your resolution ASAP.
1. It will help you exercise control yourself during the holidays
If you’re looking to lose weight or tone up (which most people at least have on their list), many people do huge amounts of health damage over the holidays. I’m a firm believer in balance and moderation in all things- no big deal if you have a crazy night or splurge in anyway- but you can often put yourself at a distinct disadvantage when you start off the New Year if you’re not careful.
As a runner, I know that I do myself more harm to my overall pace by going really slowly uphills than I can make up for by speeding down hills.
If you start a goal now and allow yourself only the occassional splurge, then the next six weeks don’t become one big calorie-gorging fest.
Plus, if you’re looking to become more comfortable at the gym, the New Year is a terrible time to do so. It’s always much more crowded than usual with people who are trying to change who they are completely. Unless you’re already comfortable at the gym or wherever you go to workout, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed when there are too many people. Get used to it now so you can handle it when it becomes nearly overwhelming in a couple months.
2. The New Year is arbitrary anyway
Don’t get me wrong- I love an excuse to work on personal goals. And I love that the New Year provides this arbitrary date that lots of people work on improving their lives.
But it’s just another day. It’s a delineation in time that actually means very little. You can start a goal any day of the week. Some of my most successful personal challenges happen at very arbitrary times. One day last November, I decided I want to start being more consistent in my journal writing. Now, almost a year later, I journal daily. I finally finished a journal I started in 2008. Five years later, I finally got consistent about it. Why? Because I just decided I wanted to start doing it. And I like the way it feels. So I’ve continued to do it.
If you want the excuse of New Year to begin something, great. But recognize that it’s a meaninless date. You can start to transform your life and make a goal into a reality anytime. And there’s no better time than right now. So just do it already won’t you?!
I still haven’t convinced you to start your resolutions yet? Fine. Here’s my last reasoning. Then I’ve got other things to do because I have begun working on some of my resolutions already so I ain’t got time for too much more of this shiz…
3. When the New Year actually comes, you can practice the most important part of attaining a goal…the ability to restart without judgement
Nobody’s perfect. And nothing worthwhile was ever attained overnight. All success stories include an element of emotional elasticity. The ability to look at what you have accomplished honestly and let it fuel you to restart after a failure.
Everyone will fail. At some point, you will not go to the gym and you’ll ruin your “Go To the Gym Daily” goal.
At some point, you’ll cheat and eat a brownie and ruin your “No Desserts for a month” goal.
At some point, you’ll call your ex-boyfriend when drunk and tell him you know all about the girl he was talking to when you two were together and that you put up with more shit than you should have and he was lucky as hell to have you as long as he did and it’s completely his fault that the relationship was ruined and how dare he de-friend you on Facebook when you were obviously the one who was wronged and the one who’s actively working on still being cordial to each other… and ruin your “Become a better person” goal.
Whew. We just got real personal there for a second.
My point is, the reason I’ve ever been successful at any goal ever is because I don’t give up after one mishap. Nor should you. Understand and embrace that fact that things can and do come up. That’s what makes life so exciting. If you could pre-plan everything in your schedule (and believe me… I’ve tried) it’d be boring and dull and predictable. Be open to the fact that you’ll slip up and make mistakes. That’s OK.
If you start your goals now, too, you’ll have a great excuse to re-assess whether or not they’re even valuable when you’ll inevitably be motivated again in the New Year.
Just some thoughts. Take ’em or leave ’em.
But before you go, tell me what you think about goals. I like hearing how others accomplish their goals. And what they went through to do so.