The New Year is a holiday that I really get the concept of. I’m a big fan of change: change for the better, change for the sake of change, even negative change as long as it doesn’t all happen at once. Change is even in my business name! At the New Year, everyone is given an opportunity to do things differently. A whole 365 days lays out blank before you to do what you want and it is unblemished, untouched, and unmarred. You can make a resolution to lose weight, eat better, start a business (oy vei), get a promotion, start a family, meet the one, fix that leaky faucet, or anything else you didn’t do last year!
Now, the joke about New Year’s Resolutions is that most of us never do them. So this post is about motivating yourself to make those changes, or at least do you best. Being something of a change-a-holic, I want to share with you the things I’ve learned about change and how to best achieve it.
1. Change is scary Many of us are creatures of habit. We wake up, have our morning coffee, hop in the shower, drive to work, come home, eat dinner, watch TV, and then go to bed. Most days, your version of that schedule probably doesn’t change that much so it is natural to assume that tossing something new and untried can create butterflies in the stomach. Getting the guts to order sashimi instead of a California roll always seems like something you’ll do next time, right?
2. Set a date One of the best ways I’ve found to get myself to stop pushing those scary things further back on the calendar is to set a date to do it. When I was younger, we had season passes to Six Flags Over Georgia and there was this human swing that dropped you about 200 ft and you simply swung back and forth. I was terrified, but I told myself that by July 4th I would do it. I think I did it a week before July 4th. It was amazing!
3. Don’t get too many reviews I am the queen of reviews. I love the Places application on my droid because I can instantly see every review of a company. However when attempting something new, reading too many reviews of it can tend to either hype you up or scare you depending on the type of person you are (as well as the reviews). Read enough to know that it is a quality company or location or experience and then end there. Obviously if you are cutting all your hair off you want a good stylist and if you’re going to finally apply to law school, you want it to be a good school. Sometimes the shark dive company that has the reviews of terrified (but safe and alive) customers might be your best bet!
4. Create an action plan Some of those big resolutions require steps. The good news is that once you get past the first step, things are less scary. Starting my business this year required steps. Losing weight requires steps. Applying to college requires steps. Starting a family requires steps. Buying a house requires steps. The list goes on. Crossing each step off the to-do list feels good and will propel you to complete the next!
5. Just do it I love the days when I wake up and say I’m doing this today. When I cut my hair off, I called my stylist and got her earliest available appointment. When my dad and I would campout on the boat at Lake Lanier, after years of being terrified I woke up one day and said I’m jumping off the bridge (into the water). Yes it is still scary, but my resolve took the edge off just a little bit and made the nerves enjoyable!
So that is my list of ways to achieve your desired change. I’m not 100% sure what my resolution is for this year (other than lose weight and to pay myself). What are some of the ways you get yourself to achieve your goals?