Blog #554 New Year’s Resolutions

Blog #554 New Year’s Resolutions – Yea or Nay?

So, it is January 2nd – you have recovered (slept in) from New Year’s Eve; you have watched enough College Bowl Football games to last until late August, and you are thinking about New Year’s Resolutions

The link (from Leadercast) suggests making New Year’s Resolutions is a waste of time.

I’m going to be opposite of that and say “Yes. Make New Year’s resolutions!!”

The article states:

“The issue with New Year’s resolutions comes when we set unrealistic expectations for ourselves—those that demand we magically, somehow overnight, form new habits and adhere to them with perfection. And when we inevitably falter in these all-new habits of ours, we eventually give up on them entirely. In the case of the ‘get healthy’ resolution that tops many people’s lists year after year, setting unrealistic expectations is the reason why gyms are their busiest in January but get calmer as the year goes on.”

Yes, the author is right on!!!  People who sit down this time and year and write up vague ideas of goals will probably abandon them before February.

BUT – the idea of reflecting on goals is a good one.  (And, New Year’s Resolutions are just goals for the New Year).

Goals like: I will lose weight this year; I will exercise more this year; I will save more money this year; I will get up a half-an-hour earlier this year to pray and meditate; I will make at least ten new friends this year; I will <whatever> are almost doomed from the outset – BUT, it does help to reflect on who we are and where we are going.

I have written (in this blog) many times on SMART goals.

S – Specific
M – Measurable
A – Attainable
R – Relevant
T – Timely

Goals like “I will lose weight this year” is really NOT a goal, but a wish.  It so vague. Consider this weight loss goal:

Assuming you weigh 215 pounds as I do

By the morning of March 31, 2019, I will weigh no more than 208 pounds as measured on our bathroom scale.  For that achievement, I will be excited, I will buy a new t-shirt to exercise in.

By the morning of May 31, 2019, I will weigh no more than 204 pounds as measured on our bathroom scale.  For that achievement, I will be enthusiastic about reaching that goal and put our American Flag out for the day.  

By the morning of July 31, 2019, I will weigh no more than 200 pounds as measured on our bathroom scale.  I will be at or below 25 BMI on that morning. I will be ecstatic and will walk around the block holding a sign saying ‘I made it’!!!

These goals are specific “I will weigh no more than <amount> by specific time and date.  The goals are measurable – Yes, I made it; or No, I didn’t make it.

The goals are attainable – they are reasonable and not radical.  A loss of 2 to 3 pounds per month is definitely in my ability.

The goals are relevant – I do want to reach 25 BMI (body mass index).

And they are timely (specific dates, times); and, in this case, they build on each other – not just going from 215 to 200 by July 31, but in steps or stages.

I will be promoted to CEO of our company by August 31, 2019.  For that, I will throw a party for the board of directors. This is NOT a good goal.  It might be specific, probably it is not attainable, may or may not be relevant.

I don’t go overboard and have thirty goals, maybe six or less in various areas, such as physical/fitness; social; financial; spiritual; or family.

I will write these goals on a post-it note that is tucked in my billfold.  Almost every time I go to the bathroom (sitting) I will pull the note out and read it (aloud preferably, but reading it aloud might not be cool in a large public bathroom!!!)

I will have post-it notes on my mirror and on the cabinets in the kitchen by the coffee maker.  Every morning when I shave, I will see the notes; every time I have a cup of coffee, I will see the note.  I WANT these to be embedded in my brain. I want to meditate on these things (see Philippians 4:8). I want them to be part of me; part of my WHO, part of my WHY!!

Can you do it?  (Answer – YES YOU CAN!!!)


Posted by Bruce White

Leave a Reply