Most people who make new year’s resolutions don’t follow through with them. Statistics say only 12% of those do see their resolutions come to fruition. I say we need a change of perspective. As a marketer, I’m a big fan of re-purposing, re-packaging something that’s still useful but has been rejected by an audience because it’s perceived as no longer relevant. Our current new year’s resolution fits the category well. Maybe we should call it an annual refocusing, but no matter the label, here’s why I think we should stop and think through what we’re doing:
Make sure you still want to go where the tracks lead you. It’s easy to realize you need a life change during a crisis. If any area of your life, such as your career, marriage, or finances are in deep trouble, you know it’s time for a major overhaul. But what happens when you’re running fast down the tracks and everything is working well, but the train is going somewhere you don’t want to go? Life has a way of subtly changing course on us. If we don’t take inventory periodically of where we are headed, we run the risk of waking up to the dreaded how-did-I-get-here realization.
Your mind and your heart need alignment. It’s easy to fall for the power of reason. “Job A pays more than job B, so what’s your question?” I remember saying those very words to a friend years ago and causing her to take a job she didn’t want and wasn’t well suited for. It was a disaster. But beyond a job, alignment of reason and passion needs to happen in every area of our lives; otherwise we live either in dread or in an emotional roller coaster.
Your brain leads you but your body must do the work. If you don’t take care of your body, you’ll shorten your dreams. If you’re too tired, or too sick to travel, move, lead, or play, you’ll cut your life short. I don’t want to waste years of experience, learning, and wisdom playing bingo in a nursing home.
Make it more than just about you. By its nature, new year’s resolutions have a way of being self serving. After a while there’s only so much “me” focused improvements we can stand. What about resolving to impact others? Consider setting aside more hours this year to volunteer, or even a larger charitable goal for your giving in 2013.
What new goal have you set this year?