Seriously people, enough with the resolutions.
Look, you weren’t born yesterday. (Unless you were, then congratulations for being the smartest, most literate baby ever). You, dear reader of the New York Moves blog, are not gullible. You’re savvy, intelligent, critical, ambitious. But maybe even you have fallen into the New Years Resolution trap. You get swept up in the excitement and freshness of a new year, a new outlook on life; or perhaps your type A personality won’t let you enter into 2013 without an impressive and hard to achieve goal blasted all over your Facebook page. Either way, you may be, only a few days into the new year, unhappily saddled with a very public goal that, if you do not achieve it, will label you lazy, useless and without resolve. Fun!
Here’s the thing. We all know that New Year Resolutions, by and large, do not last. You go to the gym for about a month, and then drop off; you eat well for a few days, and then those Christmas leftovers beckon. You stop swearing, or drinking, or screwing strangers—whatever it is, you stop for a little while, and then suddenly, you’re back to your regular, pre-resolution self, with the exception that now you feel just a little bit worse about yourself.
The reason for this is not that you’re a fat, lazy slob, or that you have no willpower or dedication. The reason is that your resolution meant nothing: it was backed by pressure and expectations rather than a genuine desire to achieve something. The best goals and resolutions occur spontaneously, when something fires in the synapses and you decide that you need a change. No amount of Cosmo articles or Facebook status updates or nagging from your mother will make you stick to a resolution: only your brain can do that.
So if you really want to improve yourself this year (and you should: go to the gym, lazy!) you should, by all means. Set a goal, and set a concrete plan in place to achieve it. Make it measurable, incremental, and most importantly, make it something you really, truly, deep down want to accomplish. And, just to give you a better chance of success, start in February.
Happy New Year, by the way.