Back in the day… about 32 years ago, I had the pleasure of being a High School teacher. One of the things that I miss about this and that makes me jealous of my wife Julie (who is a college teacher), is the end of a semester. What makes this special is that you have closure… the end of one session before you start another. Actually, this is what I think makes New Year’s Day and the concept of a New Year’s Resolution so appealing.
It is tradition at this time for most everyone to commit to at least one or two sincere goals for themselves. It could be to exercise more, lose weight, stop smoking, take more time off, spend time with family or friends, or any number of other worthwhile ambitions. And while these resolutions are mostly genuine, more often than not we find ourselves falling short!Not from a lack of trying or a valiant effort, but many times from circumstances beyond our control – we get pulled away or bombarded with “stuff” that just gets in the way.
When we do succeed though, it is typically due to a real planalong with some external assistance and support. In fact, this support is often because of real teamwork – a spouse that is there to help push us out the door to the gym, a friend that holds us to the monthly social gatherings, or in business, the team members who embrace a common business goal and push to make sure it happens. Along the way you might each have additional personal goals as well, and you find this teamwork can help you attain these as well. Without this support we can find that it is easier to get distracted or sidetracked and then before you know it your resolution evaporates!
At the end of a school semester you actually complete a class before you start a new one. There is a fresh start – new objectives, subjects, possibly even new teachers or students that will be involved. While maybe not as complete, I do believe that the end of the year helps bring some closure for each of us – even if it is only a mental break from the ongoing challenges. We get to slow down just a little – visit with family and friends, take a few days off from work and then start to think of what we would like to changein our lives.
Of course the real challenge then is to be willing to sharethese resolutions with those around us – and to ask their support in helping us to achievethese goals. Likewise each of us need to be there for our friends, family and business partners to also support them as well!When we do this, I think we will all find ourselves being more successful in the New Year.
So what are your resolutions? And don’t be afraid to share!