I am not a fan of new year resolutions. In fact, I don’t believe in them at all. There is a reason why 25% of them don’t last past the first week, and only 8% of people actually accomplish their resolution.
I believe that if you really want to do something different or improve in an area of your life, you should take a page out of Nike’s book and “Just Do It”. You shouldn’t need a yearly reminder to examine yourself. This should happen as an ongoing process through out the year. At a holiday party, someone told me for his new year’s resolution he is going to quit smoking (he said this as he took a puff). My response was “why wait for some day in the future? If you really want to quit, do it now!”
I think new year’s resolutions play into procrastination. Therefore I think we should constantly be evaluating where we are, and where we want to be while adjusting daily. For example, did you know when we send a rocket to the moon it is OFF course 97% of the time? It’s constantly correcting and I think we should choose this model for ourselves over some once a year guilt trip called new years resolutions.
To defeat new year’s resolutions I prefer to use SMART goals throughout the year.
Specific - A specific goal has a much greater chance of being accomplished than a general goal. To set a specific goal you must answer the six “W” questions:
*Who: Who is involved?
*What: What do I want to accomplish?
*Where: Identify a location.
*When: Establish a time frame.
*Which: Identify requirements and constraints.
*Why: Specific reasons, purpose or benefits of accomplishing the goal.
EXAMPLE: A general goal would be, “Get in shape.” But a specific goal would say, “Join a health club and lose 10 lbs over the next 45 days and maintain that weight for the rest of the year.”
One goal I think we can all share is to love God more. By doing this we will naturally love others more. How does that look for you? Could it be serving more, giving more, loving more, learning more? What ever that means to you, try and put it in the framework I presented above by making sure it passes the SMART test and by answering the 6 “W” questions.