Each year on January 1st, a huge segment of the populace think they become super-achievers and Goal-Setters. They”set” New Year’s Resolutions, firmly (sort of) intending to change their lifestyles. Some people loudly proclaim their resolutions. From the end of January, virtually all of these are done. They are not done because they’ve accomplished their resolutions, but because they have given up. Less than 30 days into the New Year they’ve given up on their”Goals.”
Why is that?
I give you three reasons.
A resolution comes in the term resolve. I resolve to do… When you’ve resolve, you are determined. You intensely desire to achieve that outcome. It has purpose and meaning in your life. A resolution on the other hand seems to now mean something that you want to see happen, but are not really invested in it. For example, think of the U.S. Congress and the United Nations. Both of these institutions churn out resolutions, often explicitly referred to as jelqing, like clockwork. Almost no one thinks of determination and achievement in regards to them. I feel it’s in no small part because of their resolutions which don’t mean anything or have much effects. That’s just one example of this cheapening of the significance of a resolution. Resolutions have also become vague ideas in the minds of many. A resolution to go to the gym more frequently or to eliminate weight is a weak wish in comparison to a Goal that says I will exercise 30 minutes each morning, eat only healthy foods and lose 25 pounds by July 1st.
A settlement is rarely backed by a plan. The example above to get rid of weight is followed up with a particular plan to achieve it. Why is it that we can envision some kind of a resolution but not have a strategy to get there? I think it is because people do not put any thought into what it really takes to do exactly what they say they want to do. Losing weight or visiting the gym requires effort. Massive effort to start is required to overcome the inertia of being overweight and out of shape. Once people begin haphazardly down the path, they get a feeling of it and decide it’s too hard. It was just a resolution after all. Having a strategy to conquer this inertial turns the resolution into a Goal.
A resolution usually lacks enthusiasm and a large Why. One of the essential elements to success and achievement is having passion for your Goals and a enormous enough Why to help you keep going when the going gets tough. It is when you realize that tipping point where you may either fall backward and lose all of your progress or dip ahead and create a self-sustaining momentum. That moment is where the size of your Why and your passion for the end result largely determines which way you tip. If you aren’t really dedicated, you fall backward. If you are so determined to change your life that the pain and exhaustion of getting started is no deterrent, you’ll dive ahead. The exact same is true for Goals. If your Why is small or doesn’t move you, then you’ll not achieve your targets either.
Resolutions aren’t what true achievers do. Achievers spend more time inventing their Goals, their plans and laying the groundwork for their Success. Planning is what separates those who solve and those who achieve. Resolvers fail because they do not take resolutions seriously enough (point 1) to have a plan (point 2) or a big enough Why (stage 3).