According to Wikipedia, the origin of New Year’s resolutions ranges from the Babylonians promising to return borrowed objects and pay down debts to the Romans making promises to their god Janus, the namesake of the month of January.
While there are many online sources that can tell us from where the tradition sprang, there are even more voices that offer unsolicited advice on why people don’t succeed in completing their vows. Reading those essays made me realize that this year I need to do a little better job of thinking through my resolutions.
Perhaps I need to start with the most basic question of all. Should I make any resolutions? Hmm. That leads to the startlingly obvious issue….why do I make them?
I would be lying if I didn’t admit to you that I do feel a New Year is monumental. Materially you could argue it’s false. The most physically significant change to our lives is adjusting our date memory to end in a 3 versus a 2! The rest? A new scorecard for your business? A new semester for your schooling? A new season of holiday weekends to plan?
But the feeling does persist. Yet I am not sure I can articulate it.
Perhaps it’s because there is no more liberating feeling than starting over. A clean slate. A fresh beginning. A whole new ballgame.
If last year was a tough one, you can see a world of potential in this one.
If last year was a great one, you can envision keeping your friend momentum chugging along!
If last year had ups and downs, surely 2013 will be all peaks.
Most of us like keeping score. Keeping score until infinity isn’t any fun. So a calendar year provides a nice tidy beginning and end to your personal game of life. The year is the entire game. The months and weeks become periods. The days become shifts.
So back to the resolutions? I am going to put to use this Wayne Gretzky quotation, “You’ll always miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.”
So don’t be afraid of making resolutions you don’t achieve. Make a few. Chase them with enthusiasm.
My #1 Resolution for 2013? I already told you!