There have been so many new years that have started with outrageous expectations…resolutions I would never keep.
I have learned two things:
- It is worse to make resolutions you can’t keep than to not make any at all and
- it is important to be honest with yourself.
Maybe your resolution is to quit drinking. You hold steady for about a week and then Saturday night rolls around, your friends are all getting together for someone’s birthday and you have just one drink, which leads to several and then your resolution is out the window. Why? Most likely because you didn’t really want to quit drinking in the first place. Maybe a better resolution would have been to cut back on the amount you drink! Look honestly at yourself! It feels so much better to make a resolution that you can reasonably keep and keep it than to have expectations that are too high and never meet them!
Just like losing weight. You say you want to fit in size 6 jeans by June, fine, but recognize how much weight you have to lose to meet that goal and how realistic it is that you actually lose the weight. A resolution should always be accompanied by a plan. It’s like starting a business. The first step should always be a business plan, a map of how you are going to accomplish your business goals. Make a map of how you are going to accomplish your goals, weather it is weight loss, saving money, quitting a bad habit. Once you start making your map you will have a better idea of how realistic your plan is. If you meet road blocks along the way, find a different route!
Maybe you really do want to quit drinking but you have a group of friends that you always drink with, no matter how many times you tell yourself your not going to. Instead of feeling like a failure every time you wake up the next morning, find something else to do, a new hobby. You will most likely feel much more rewarded for your efforts and you are broadening your horizons along the way!
I quit drinking nearly three years ago and it was, surprisingly, one of the easiest things I have done, once I was committed to quitting.
There are three reasons for this:
- I was realistic about my expectations to quit
- I changed my habits because I truly wanted to quit drinking
- I was supported by my spouse
That’s it! The truth of it! I was prepared for the shocked looks and snide comments I knew I would get from some of our friends. I was also so rewarded when I left a party, stone cold sober, to drive safely home and be hangover free. It is true that I did not stay as long at any of the parties but it is also true that I never woke up regretting it the next morning. The rewards were worth the effort for me!
An added bonus for me is that my kids never see me drinking and we rarely expose them to an environment with heavy drinking. My husband does not drink at all due to his kidney failure and that also made it easier for me to quit! It helps more than I can say to have that level of support! If it means that much to you, hopefully you can get the support from home when you need it!
My husband and I do a 365 day love dare with a new “dare” each day. This morning the dare was this: “Joined together, you are greater than your independent parts. You need each other. You complete each other. Recognize that your spouse is integral to your future success.” Not everyone has a spouse or significant other but it does not have to be your husband or wife! What if your best friend was that support for you or maybe your Mom!
The goal is to accomplish your goal! Surround yourself with people that love you, good influences and positive vibes! Be realistic and honest! 2016 can be ridiculously awesome if we make it that way!