3 Tips for Keeping your New Year’s Resolutions (to Create your Own Self Improvement Montage or Narrative)

How many characters in stories grapple with the question of who they are vs. who they want to be? This is an intoxicating theme and the reason we see it played across in so many characters in stories.  Maybe it’s not happening on the first of the year as a New Year’s resolution, or maybe it is. The point is we all identify at some point with the idea of wanting to be better versions of ourselves.

I confess I have been an avid goal setter, and resolutioner my whole life, logging hundreds of hours carefully setting goals that never came to be and some that did.

From my experience I put together 3 simple tips for setting fail-proof New Year’s resolutions.

  1. Take time to reflect!
    To quote the band Semisonic, “every new beginning comes from some other beginning’s end,” and that’s what the New Year is all about; sectioning off a year, and paying attention to what we have learned. A long time ago I came across a book that put all of my New Year resolution creating. “Your Best Year Yet” helps readers to reflect and look ahead with 10 easy questions to get your head in the right place.
  2. Do it your way!
    There is no one right diet, exercise or money saving plan, but the experts trying to sell you their book will sure make it seem that way.  The only right way to do something is the way that actually WORKS for you. A great book I read this past year called “Change Anything: The New Science of Personal Success” by Kerry Patterson, Joseph Grenny, David Maxfield, Ron McMillan and Al Switzler, talks about being the scientist and the subject. If you’re not meeting your goals, don’t feel ashamed and give up. Go back to the drawing board and find a way that does work.
  3. Don’t sell short the spiritual side of life
    Or as my mom always said, “whether you think you can or you think you can’t…. you’re absolutely right.” The truth is what we believe has everything to do with how we perform.  Our brain believes what we tell it, whether it’s true or not.  Being in good spiritual shape for me means a lot of mediation, but everyone is different. Be you and develop a spiritual discipline that works. Remember the old proverb….“Be careful of your thoughts, for your thoughts become your words. Be careful of your words, for your words become your actions. Be careful of your actions, for your actions become your habits. Be careful of your habits, for your habits become your character. Be careful of your character, for your character becomes your destiny. — Chinese proverb, author unknown.The oh so satisfying montages in “Under the Tuscan Sun” and “Bridget Jones Diary” can be on your Facebook feed if you stay the course and are careful not to “should” all over yourself, and focus on what works instead.