So, it’s the start of another new year and you know what that means – resolutions. I have an impressive history of faithfulness regarding resolutions, faithfully making and breaking them, that is.
Every January 1st, I faithfully write down my resolutions in my journal and just as faithfully break most of them before the ink has completely dried on the page.
So, this year I decided to do a bit of research about how to make and keep resolutions to increase my chances for sticking to them for more than 45 minutes. According to my research, the key to success seems to be clearly defining what you want to achieve and coming up with an effective strategy for getting there. I tried out this approach with one of my perennial resolutions, going on a diet.
First, to be sure I was defining “diet” clearly, I turned to the dictionary. And it’s a good thing I did. Lo and behold diet is defined first and foremost as “food and drink that is consumed on a regular basis.” What a revelation!
I consume food and drink on a very regular basis, hourly sometimes, therefore I am already “on a diet!” Once I had that clear in my mind, the strategy was obvious. Continue to consume food and drink on a regular basis. Ta-da, cross off resolution one because I’d achieved it without even knowing it!
Flush with my success, I moved on to tackling the rest of the items on my list, careful to include a strategy for success for each one.
Strategy: Undress in front of the mirror…with the lights on…with my eyes open.
Strategy: Clean the lint trap in my dryer.
Strategy: Move the peanut butter cups to the top shelf.
Strategy: Have pizza delivered.
Strategy: Buy vowels on “Wheel of Fortune” only on the really hard puzzles.
Strategy: Buy lower wattage light bulbs.
Strategy: sleep at work.
Strategy: Insist on being taken advantage of.
Strategy: Mentally correct all the grammatical errors on daytime talk shows.
Strategy: Genuflect before picking up the remote.
Strategy: Schedule a lobotomy
Strategy: Put up more mirrors in my house.
Strategy: Take down all the mirrors in my house.
Strategy: Or maybe not.
Armed with my new understanding of how to achieve success, I feel confident that 2017 will be my breakthrough year, the year I finally accomplish all I have resolved to do. And if by chance I am not 100% successful, there’s always Plan B, which is to add any leftover items to my 2018 list!
What strategies are you using to take a more lighthearted approach to sticking with your New Year’s resolutions? Do you agree that humor is often the best defense against the serious challenges life presents? We invite you to join the conversation.