Assumptions & Truth.

Photo by Mark Poprocki/Hemera / Getty Images
Photo by Mark Poprocki/Hemera / Getty Images

Assumptions & Truth

My thoughts on Resolutions, and how to upgraded them to something worthwhile. 

“Question Everything. Learn Something. Answer Nothing.” - Euripides -

Resolutions get a bad rap.
Most people fall into the two categories of: 

  1. Having resolutions, but not achieving what they want (about 45% make resolutions, and out of those, only about 8% are successful).
  2. Or, believing that resolutions don’t work so why even bother (about 38% don’t make resolutions).

However, these are just plain-jane resolutions. I think we can make them better

In my opinion, there is a third more elusive category of people who do not conform to the mainstream ideas of making resolutions. Instead, non-conformists explicitly define what they want to achieve, leaving no room for vagueness in their goals. These folks are the real-deal movers and shakers. People who question everything about themselves and give thought to how they really want to impact their life, and the world around them. They take an honest look at their previous year (as well as life in general), and think about how they can use what worked and what didn't, to make their next year, and ultimately, their life, better. Non-conformists find achievement and reach new heights, year after year. They make you want to belong into their tribe, and give you hope that you can achieve your own resolutions.

I don't know about you, but I definitely want to be in this category, rather than the others. To do this, I've been thinking a lot about what really makes a resolutions attainable, and the best way I can think of, is to question assumptions about resolutions, and find the truth about how to actually achieve what you set out to do. Here are my assumptions & truths:

“Revolution starts in the mind. Question Everything!” - Bryant H. McGill - 

Assumptions & truth

Assumption #1: You can only make resolutions at the beginning of a new year.

Truth: You can create a resolution for yourself at any moment. You don’t have to wait. You don’t have to put things off. You can start something new, and exciting, and ultimately, decide to recreate yourself whenever you want to.

Assumption #2: A resolution is either pass or fail. There is no margin for error or mistakes. If you mess up or don't commit to it everyday, you might as well give up.

Truth: We are all human, and are bound to make mistakes. That doesn't mean we should just give up though. The difference between those that achieve and those that don't is their resolve. Resolve to fight, even when you're down for the count.

Assumption #3: Resolutions are dumb and they never work.

Truth: Resolutions are only dumb if you don’t put in the time to create a plan of how you are going to accomplish them. You need to make specific action steps for each resolution. You’ve figured out the what, now you need to brain-storm the how. There are many paths you can take, the important thing is to choose the ones that work for you. And know that achieving your goals will take time. Resolutions are a journey, not a trip through the wormhole. We’ve got to put in the time to make them happen. 

As the old saying goes, Rome wasn’t built in a day, and neither are you.

Plan your attack. You can’t just set ‘em and forget ‘em. Now that is dumb.

Assumption #4: I can make a HUGE list and DO IT ALL!!!!

Truth: A large list of things you want to do and accomplish, is not necessary bad, however, it can lead to  stress and overwhelm. There is such a thing as wanting to do too much at one time, being completely overwhelmed by it all, and because of that, either making little to no progress in anything, or not even doing them in the first place. (I know this feeling allll to well.) Personally, overwhelm is what I struggle with most. There is a lot that I want to do, and go after, but the weight of trying to do everything at the same time can be crushing. The key for me is to give one-hundred percent focus to whatever I am doing at this moment, and focusing only on the few important things, rather than the many semi-important things. This is not easy (especially if you want to a RenaissanceMan or RenaissanceWoman) but one idea that helps me, is to remind myself that giving one-hundred percent on one thing at a time, is much better than giving one percent on a hundred things.

Assumption #5: You have to do it alone.

Truth: Collaboration is key. You can accomplish even more than you set out to do, if you involve a friend, loved one or even the community. You are not alone. There are others out there that would like to accomplish the same resolution as you, why not create a peer group to keep each other accountable? Friendly motivation and or competition will get you everywhere.

Action Steps When Planning Your Resolutions:

1. Make your Resolutions as specific as possible.

Define what you want to do and achieve.
Make it as specific as possible and leave no room for vagueness.
Go Deep.

For example, something like, “I want to be healthy.” is not gonna cut it. A resolution like this is too open.
Instead, go deeper; Define what ‘health’ actually means to you.

“I want to be healthy:
                I feel energized and refreshed when I wake up, and throughout the day.
                I take a walk outside everyday (for at least ten minutes)
                I want to eat real, high-quality of food as much as possible throughout the week
                I will improve my strength and body by exercising twice a week (Sprinting / Running, and Weight Lifting)

                I will improve my mental capacity by training the mind, learning new and interesting things everyday, and challenging myself.

                I will improve my emotional / spiritual health by developing relations (new and old)…”

All in all, go deeper, and plan out your attack (how you are going to achieve your resolutions).

2. Write them down.

Writing down your Resolutions solidifies them in your mind. You can periodically read them to motivate yourself if you want, regardless, just the act of writing them down will at least subconsciously keep them on the back of your mind throughout the year.

3. Start Immediately.

After defining, and writing down your Resolutions, start immediately. There is no sense in waiting for the new year, or for a better time. There’s no time like the present, and if you really want to reinvent yourself, you have to make your own change. You are your own Renaissance.

4. Don't quit because of failure.

Failure is not the end, rather, its the beginning.
You need resolve to achieve your resolutions.
A Resolve to Fight. 
A Belief in yourself that you can.
And the knowledge that failure is ok.

No Regrets.

The only reason you should quit something, is if you end up not liking it. If you truly don't like doing something, then don't do it. Quitting for the right reasons is not failure, you are just choose take a different path instead.

5. Have a Focus on List, and a Someday List.

Create a list of what you really want to focus on right now. Your focuses should be what you think will have the most impact. The rest of your goals and desire can go on a Someday List. Equally important as your Focus on List, just something you’ll do after you accomplish your focus list.

6. And Lastly, Plan out your attack.

How exactly are you going to accomplish your goal?
What’s your play-by-play? 
What’s your daily, weekly or even monthly schedule look like? And are you taking steps toward your goal regularly?

Reminder #011 : Question Everything. Join the ranks of the Non-Conformists. Make specific Resolutions for yourself. Plan out your attack. Resolve to fight. Believe that you can, and focus on the few, rather than the many. Remember that you can reinvent yourself if you choose to do so.