It was only 34 days ago that many of you made some New Years Resolutions. I actually made mine official on January 3rd. How are you doing? If you are like me and millions of others the results are probably a mixed bag. The first month is the hardest.
The function of a resolution is to change habits—get rid of a bad one or develop a good one. The truth is your day is loaded with habits. Without habits you would be making endless paralyzing decisions every hour. You will get further in business and enjoy life if you can program more good habits.
As a salesman working in a marketing company one of our primary goals is to change the habits of other people. We want them to accept our solutions. The reason marketing companies exist for this function is that is very difficult to get people to change.
When I set my resolutions up I was mindful that they needed to be challenging, simple, realistic and above all monitored.
You can take my word for it or you can check the original in an earlier blog. I was a bit too wordy, but felt the need to explain my reasoning. Specifically I mentioned a number of pushups (25) I needed to accomplish and that I would take one extra walk per week and use an elliptical machine that had been made more convenient for me. Also I set two simple (but lately difficult for me to attain) sales effort standards. I included a few vague resolutions such as mindful eating, respect others and some thought to using social media more. I threw in a photo of my immediate family as a sort of motivator.
To make it more effective I broadcast my resolutions to my social network. In fact to be honest over the holidays I had made a decision to get involved with facebook and with some encouragement from one person in particular I had hit a tipping point. I would actually tie in the vague social media goal to my need to develop some good habits.
My immediate family, quite a part of my extended family many of the people I work with, friends, a few people I would like to get to know better all have access to what I have said. I got one bit of feedback, that was very helpful towards achieving one of my goals. The feeling of accomplishment motivates further efforts to improve my habits. I had promised to inform people of my progress (this is part of that process).
For exercises after struggling for several years I already achieved 25 pushups in one set and now feel can go much higher. I did my three walks a week, but feel it is not enough. Have put in some time on the elliptical and gradually working up to more total time. On the work front I have achieved either of the two goals a few times, but am nowhere near the average I wanted. A part from a three day phone problem the main cause is the winding down of two projects, but shortly two more bigger projects will start. I hope my habits are developing in the right direction.
It is very difficult to change a habit on your own. Reminders and incentives help, but if you are the only one aware they will gradually lose their power. Social media offers an opportunity to turn peer pressure to habit changing.
You can actually make resolutions any time you want. I am upping my resolution to 50 consecutive pushups and 50 consecutive situps. Go ahead, pick one thing you would like to change, really think about it. Let us (and others know). Start now.
The photo is of the renovated Hamilton Public Library at night. One of my inspirations to get me walking more.