My 2017 New Year’s Resolution
…is not to have one!

Have you ever set a New Year’s Resolution (NYR) only to see it fail time and time again? I sure have, and it seems like every little failure, whether daily or less frequent made me feel bad about myself. Let’s say I set a goal to workout every day, and one day missed a workout. The next day, I’d beat myself up about it and being the all-or-nothing type of person I am, I’d figure that the whole resolution was shot and I’d give up, feeling like a complete failure.

I think we can agree that most NYRs are basically goals. I recently read an article about how goal setting isn’t practical since some goals may take so much time, we forget about the process it takes to reach the goal in the first place. This article suggested setting systems instead of goals. A system is the process you are going to try to use to reach the goal you want. For example, your goal is to lose those pesky last-five-pounds in 2017. You should create a system of reducing (or eliminating) alcohol during the week…maybe you’ll only allow yourself to drink one glass of wine on Friday night and Saturday night instead of two glasses Thursday through Sunday. Think about the systems you use in your job; if you’re an accountant one of your goals may be to close month-end by the fifth day of the next month. You have systems that you already use to get you there on time. Why not apply the same “systems” method that you use at work to achieve your other goals…and focus on sticking to a system, rather than achieving the goal.

The article asks a brilliant question: “If you completely ignored your goals and focused only on your system, would you still get results?” I believe the answer is, “YES!” And I also believe that you may get better results since the chance of failure or quitting before the goal is reached would decrease.

My systems for achieving what I want in 2017:

I am going to do at least 30 minutes of intense movement, four times per week. I will write this on my calendar to have a visual of it every day and remind me that I have a commitment just like any meeting or patient visit.

I am going to drink 64 to 80 ounces of water per day. I have a 32 ounce bottle that I love to drink from and will drink 2.5 bottles per day and keep track in my Fitbit app.

I am going to do two speaking engagements per month about wellness. I will dedicate two, one-hour blocks per week to brainstorm, contact venues, and market my speaking engagements.

Now it’s your turn to think of your goals and create your own system of how you’d like to get there.