Don’t Make Resolutions

Resolutions. Most of us think about them this time of year, perhaps even make these well-intentioned promises to ourselves, but by the end of January the vast majority are either forgotten or surrendered. Another year passes by and that next December we make those same resolutions again, telling ourselves “this year will be different”, only to delude ourselves yet again. It is a vicious cycle of rising optimism followed by diminishing willpower, self-reproach and deflated esteem.

Nestled among thirteen different definitions in my dictionary is the meaning of the term resolution as it traditionally applies in our culture on this holiday: “a firm decision to do something”. While your resolution may be a firm decision, what exactly backs that decision up? Is it the thin veneer of newly found confidence beneath a core of well-practiced uncertainty or self doubt that you are putting our faith in? Are you simply taking advantage of the socially accepted do-over? Do you really believe this is finally the year that you will lose those pounds, quit that job or habit you loathe or act on that dream you’ve intended on pursuing for the past decade? What is different about today from yesterday that suddenly gives you the magic ability to change?   Read the rest of this entry »