New Year’s resolutions often don’t work because we get a little distracted, lose focus, lack persistence, or slack off. Sometimes we let events or other people’s needs get in the way. But all too predictably, once we stray from our intentions, we feel like failures and quit altogether.
It’s a pity that we don’t give ourselves credit for our partial successes. Too often, if we don’t succeed 100 percent, again, we feel like failures. We bemoan our inability to grow and change, instead of seeing that we actually have begun, little by little, to grow and change.
Luckily, it’s possible to hold back the tide of disappointment and disillusionment.
Begin with a Single Step
Instead of fussing about on what you haven’t accomplished, just look at what you’ve done!
- Maybe you tried something new for only a few weeks before you petered out. But that’s no reason not to try again. Your first experience got you down the learning curve, and now you know what to do and you’ll start from a higher-level launch pad!
- Maybe you began trying the new thing toward the end of last year, so you haven’t seen many results yet. Well, acknowledge yourself for getting where you are now — and then decide if you’d like to take it further.
- Maybe you’ve been intermittent and inconsistent about your new efforts. But now you know what you do and don’t like, and what does and doesn’t work for you, so you’ll move ahead faster next time.
See? You may not have noticed, but you were already on a path forward. Maybe you took a break, or you haven’t gone very far or very fast yet, but you’re still on that path, where you can continue moving ahead.
Even if you’re only thinking about a change you want to make and haven’t tried anything new yet, you’re still making progress. Pre-contemplation and contemplation are the first two stages of any change process.
Take It the Next Step
Now can you tell that you’re already on your way? Shift a little to a more comfortable spot, reach a little higher, stick with it a little longer, and see just how far you can go.
You may not be fully successful yet, but you’re not finished either. Remember to check your progress, even if it doesn’t feel like you’ve made much. Let it be a productive year.
Onward and upward,