For years, I’ve set New Year’s resolutions. For years, I’ve been frustrated by them. Regardless of when in the year you are reading this post, I challenge you to change the way you think about these resolutions.
My parents taught me to set goals when I was a kid. I’ve written out my goals in various categories most years since. I set goals in these categories: spiritual, personal development, relational/family, health, career, and social. Every year at about this time, those resolutions have gone by the wayside.
I read a book last month that I highly recommend. It is called The One Thing by Gary Keller. Awesome. He blew up some of the wrong thinking I had about setting goals. I want to distill that information for you.
Myths of Setting Resolutions
Multi-tasking – My wife claims to be great at this. I agree by the way. Most women that I know, in fact, are much better at multi-tasking than I am. However, multi-tasking doesn’t actually exist. Scientific studies now prove that you can’t multi-task. You just interrupt yourself – bouncing back and forth between tasks.
Some of us bounce back and forth quicker – some more efficiently. Studies now prove that should you focus your entire energy on one task at a time, you will do them all better and faster. I realize that my wife is now thinking that is a luxury she doesn’t have.
If you can, focus on one task or goal at a time. I have been failing at my New Year’s resolutions due to multi-tasking. I try to change too much about my lifestyle at the same time.
Habit Forming – I’ve heard for years that it takes 21 times to form a habit. You’ve probably heard the same thing. That is a lie. Studies now show that it takes about 66 days. This means most of us only focus on forming a new habit – or building a new goal into our lives – for 1/3 of the time it takes.
No wonder this has been a frustration for me.
Priorities?? – What are your priorities? Do you know what the definition of priority means? It means the main thing – the first thing. Do you realize you can’t have more than one first thing? You can’t have two first place finishers. It is impossible.
It is only in the last couple decades that the word “priority” has had the pluraliztion “priorities.” We have watered down the meaning of the word from the first thing to an important thing. But no longer for me. A priority is just one thing.
So here is my method for this year and beyond:
- I have chosen the 6 habits (resolutions) that I want to build into my life this year.
- One at a time, for two months (66 days), I am focusing all my energy on just one thing.
- After the first habit is built into my life, I move on to the next most important one.
Imagine the impact this could have over the span of years. Think of the productivity and greatness you could achieve.
So how do you know which one to start with? Ask this question. Which of these habits will make it easier or unnecessary to accomplish the others?
Question: If you get 6 habits to build into your life in a year, I’d like to know what you would choose. You can leave a comment by clicking here.
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