At the end of each year, most people share a tradition of writing down resolutions and big goals for the upcoming new year. While I think it is important to always have dreams and goals, the stigma around basing your goals off a calendar is not the way to go about making lasting change and usually results in failure.
Studies show that only eight percent of Americans who make a New Year’s resolution actually keep them all year and 80 percent have failed by the start of February. One reason for this is because of the pressure to try and make huge lifestyle changes such as starting a fitness journey or working towards some sort of financial goal- when you simply are not ready.
Instead, the change should be made not relying on a certain day, but when you have the true preparation and commitment to stick to it. Delaying a goal to when it can truly be worked towards is better than abandoning it altogether.
Another problem with aligning goals to a specific date is the fact that if you truly want to accomplish something- it can be worked towards whenever. I am a strong believer that if you sincerely want to do something you can do it no matter what or when – you just need the right mindset.
Resolutions are crucial in growing as a person and it should be normalized to make them whenever you feel as though you are ready. Personal growth and goal setting and achieving is not linear and should not be calendarized.
More so, the pressure of having multiple resolutions is simply too overwhelming and unobtainable. For instance, having one resolution for the year leads to more success because it allows for more preparation, and the time to truly fulfill the commitment to yourself. Being more likely to achieve one resolution will create more motivation and esteem to continue on the path of bettering yourself as well. Additionally, having one goal will allow more willpower to actually stick to it because it will be a top priority, having no other competition.
It is also crucial that resolutions are relevant and specific to you. There is a societal pressure that resolutions circulate around a very narrow popular list. For instance, in 2021 about half of Americans wanted to start 2021 by getting in shape, and a quarter wanted to save money. But, I am here to say dreams and goals are supposed to be specially aligned to your life and should not be concerned with following the expectations of others.
So with that being said, come Jan. 1, 2022, I urge you to make the resolution to not make any resolutions. Instead, enter the year with an open mind. Take the time to think about the chance of achieving your goals when the time is right for you in the next 365 days.