There is a rea­son why New Year’s res­o­lu­tions are not carved in stone

The Hamburg Area Item - - Local News - Colum­nist

Many of us over the years have made New Year’s res­o­lu­tions. And then failed to keep any of them.

About the only res­o­lu­tion I’ve ever kept is to no longer make New Year’s res­o­lu­tions.

But for some strange rea­son, I’ve made an ex­cep­tion for 2018. I’ve made four res- olu­tions. I’m call­ing them my Fi­nal Four.

One, con­tinue pro­cras­ti­nat­ing on ad­dress­ing all my bad habits, start­ing to­mor­row.

Two, pack on about 40 pounds by eat­ing potato chips and ba­nana splits for lunch ev­ery day.

Three, write all my col­umns on my lap­top while perched at a Monte Carlo bac­carat ta­ble.

Four, I hereby re­solve to set an ex­am­ple of ci­vil­ity like an Eng­lish but­ler and cut back my the­atri­cal tantrums to no more than one per hour.

For many folks, mak­ing New Year’s res­o­lu­tions is as in­evitable as the sun­rise, as cer­tain as folks wear­ing adult di­a­pers in Times Square as they wait hours for the ball to drop.

It’s also an ab­so­lute that New Year’s res­o­lu­tions are much ado about noth­ing, even when they’re con­ceived with all the ex­cite­ment of Pen­te­costal­ism.

Re­searchers have found that about 60 per­cent of us make New Year’s res­o­lu­tions each year but only about 8 per­cent are suc­cess­ful in achiev­ing them.

So why is it so in­sanely tough to stick to res­o­lu­tions?

Be­cause in mak­ing res­o­lu­tions we’re es­sen­tially tak­ing a piece of make- be­lieve and try­ing to will it into re­al­ity. No won­der res­o­lu­tions have all the ad­he­sive­ness of wet Post- it notes. The orig­i­nal emo­tion giv­ing birth to a res­o­lu­tion soon dif­fuses or mu­tates. Plus, res­o­lu­tions ride in tan­dem with self- dis­ci­pline, some­thing most peo­ple find to be an ar­che­typal me­nace.

So here are some tips for the weak- willed masses:

Choose a spe­cific, re­al­is­tic goal. If your nick­name is Cookie Mon­ster, don’t ex­pect your friends to ever call you Chis­eled Six- Pack.

Un­like me, pick just one res­o­lu­tion. This is sim­ple math. Scal­ing one Mount Ever­est is tough enough. Why go for two? There’s al­ways next year.

Start with small steps. Change is a process. Don’t ex­pect an im­me­di­ate trans­for­ma­tion un­less you too can change wa­ter into wine.

Be con­tent with in­cre­men­tal progress. For those un­able to go all the way, fore­play is ev­ery­thing.

Get a sup­port team. In fact, form one of the cagi­est in­ner cir­cles since Car­di­nal Riche­lieu.

Avoid re­peat­ing past fail­ures. If you’ve vowed to quit smok­ing for the past 47 years and you’re still burn­ing three packs down to ash each and ev­ery day, move onto to some­thing else.

What­ever your res­o­lu­tions may or may not be, Happy New Year!

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from USA

© PressReader. All rights reserved.