Resolutions don't work as they have gained the reputation of accepted failure. Turn them into promises with consequences and you will be successful.
Like so many other people on the planet, I have made resolutions for New Year…every New Year. If I would have stuck to the lot of them, I would be on the shortlist for Sainthood.
And now I have finally discovered why I’m not on that list. Simply because sainthood has not been my objective, at least not at this stage of my life. Pleasing every whim and person in the world is not what I’m about.
At this stage it is great to just admit to myself that resolutions are crap.
We make them and a couple of days into the new year we drop them like hot potatoes as they cramp the lifestyle that we’re used to. Whether it’s smoking, drinking, losing weight, more time with the family, a daily walk with the family pet, a better colleague to your co-workers, getting up at a fixed an earlier time every day, no more sugar in your coffee….whatever it is, if you don’t change the circumstance of your daily rhythm, your resolutions are just failures. They have too many mental mental loopholes. And failure has become a bit like the prison system…way too overcrowded.
Pinky promises are different. They have a price tag attached to them and that tag can be significant in terms of respect, accomplishment and success, whether it’s a promise to yourself or a loved one.
In preparation for 2010 I have spent considerable time establishing some real values of promises to myself. Personally I don’t think it is a good thing to take the last day of the year as a cut off date for bad habits. It’s a bit like walking with the masses and using their success or failures as a shield for your own failure. Choose the right day and right environment to start your pinky promises. Mark that day and let people know, but most of all prepare yourself mentally and have a plan.
When I woke up New Year’s Day morning the house was quiet for another couple of hours, time that I used to write a flexible day planner, a week schedule, a monthly objective chart and an annual bucket list. To each of these I made a pinky promise to myself (hey, I have 2 pinkies myself). I am not going to bore you with the details because truly that is something between me and myself. Mostly because only I can define what for me the balance between work and family is, at what weight level I’m comfortable, how much money needs to be in my bank account to feel secure, what car I’d like to drive or where I want to go on vacation. Reality is that there is a lot of diplomacy involved in executing pinky promises that directly or indirectly touch on other people’s lives.
But if 2009 was an exceptionally bad year for you, you may want to give pinky promises to yourself a serious consideration, after you do some intense and brutally honest soul searching. The power of promises is exponentially more intense than resolutions, by they cover both your actions and reactions. And if you really want changes, you bite in the sour apple and go for it and don’t forget that changes require a long term objective with short term goals to stay focused and on course.
Carpe Anno 2010