Without fail, the ushering in of a new year brings with it a stream of new year’s resolutions! Gyms get filled, people sober up or go on detoxes, and so it goes. But, about a month or two later, this trend of people doing what’s really, really good for them and avoiding what’s really, really bad for them starts to taper off. Why? Because resolutions don’t last and aren’t the same as setting actual goals.
Goals vs. Resolutions
So, what’s the difference? A “resolution” is a firm decision or determination to do/not do something. A “goal” is the result or achievement toward which effort is directed. A goal is result or action-oriented; whereas a resolution focuses on an intention or state of mind. There is absolutely nothing wrong with having a firm intention to do or not do something, but what are you actually doing to achieve that intention?
And new year’s resolutions are the worst kind of resolutions! They are always these incredibly lofty goals, like “I’m going to give up chocolate for 2 months”, or “I’m going to end world hunger” (okay, maybe not that extreme, but you get what I’m saying). My biggest beef about making them is: why are we waiting until the new year? If you know the thing you’re resolving to do is good for you, then why wait until the beginning of the year to start?
It’s kind of like my favourite line in the movie, When Harry Met Sally…, “..When you realize you want to spend the rest of your life with somebody, you want the rest of your life to start as soon as possible.” It’s the same thing with goals – when you realize what your goals are, start working on them as soon as possible!
I started going back to the gym (after a 5 year hiatus from the gym, and 6-8 month hiatus from any type of physical activity) in early December. I could have waited until January. But, it would have just given me another excuse to eat whatever I wanted throughout December, thereby setting me back even further and making it even harder to attain my fitness goals! Instead of waiting until the start of the year, think about and set your goals right away!
What are your short-term and long-term goals for 2017?