Resolution strategy refinement

Getting back on track
Getting back on track

You’ve had time to think about what is important to you to change. You’ve implemented a strategy to change. Now it’s time to look at how your overall goal matches your needs and how your strategy is working.

It is easy to assume that making a resolution is the heavy lifting and that everything will fall into place as the year goes on. However many great resolutions go by the wayside because we are not willing to re-evaluate what we are doing and how we are doing it. I will give you an example.

Often people want to stop a certain behavior, be it abuse of drugs or alcohol, overeating or smoking. Let’s stick with the example of smoking cessation for now. You’ve made a resolution to stop and now it is the end of January. You may have quit for a few days but now you are right back to smoking the same number of cigarettes that you had been before the New Year.

There are two questions to ask yourself at this point:
1.) Is this the right goal (stopping smoking) for me?
2.) Am I going about it in a realistic way?

For certain behaviors, of course, there is no question that stopping will be beneficial. Smoking is one of those behaviors. So the answer is yes to the first question. It’s the second question that can make or break the achievement of your goal and if you are not open to re-evaluating things then your resolution will be very difficult if not impossible to achieve.

Say your strategy was to quit cold turkey. Many people are successful with this strategy. Many are not. The research shows that the more strategies you use to stop smoking the more likely you are to be successful. So you do some research on your own and find out that your preparation to achieve your goal was limited since it only provided you with one strategy. Your willingness to rethink things allows you to TRY AGAIN with a number of other strategies.

One of my mantras is: THINK, PREPARE, DO, REFINE. And then do it again…and again… This persistence is how change happens.

Allow the month of February to be your time to refine the implementation of your goals. No one does anything the way anyone else does. We can learn from the research and other people’s experiences but each of us has to fine tune how we get to where we want to be.

Happy changing!

This information is for educational purposes only and should not in any way be considered a substitute for professional help. If you feel that you need immediate assistance please call your local psychiatric emergency services.

Blogging interruptus: The first year syndrome

photo of blog

I have been blogging for a little over a year now. The gains have been many: increased discipline; getting my views and thoughts out to others; learning through researching subjects for blog posts; gaining expertise through creating and maintaining my own website; mastering social media in order to promote my blog; and, most importantly I hope, helping others. I have been religious about establishing a writing routine and have enjoyed the process of discovering what I feel compelled to write about each week.

But no more. I have been going through a rough patch during the last month. I feel disconnected from my blog and everything to do with it. Every day I tell myself that I will get back in the groove and every day I have an excuse not to.

Usually when I don’t do something that I think I should be doing I eventually get to the point where I begin to look at what is going on with me. The “why” can lead me to how I may be able to get back on track.

So, first of all, I think getting to the one year point is important. I realize that, when I began blogging, I thought I would have a presence on the web after a year. What this means is hard to define. It comes down to expectations, I guess. And, as I well know, expectations are often a set up for disappointment and discouragement.

Then there’s the issue of my perception that I have exhausted my capacity to write about things that interest me. There has been a temporary lack of intellectual curiosity on my part.

Somewhere I got side-tracked. The joy and excitement were replaced first by obligation and then by lack of interest. I would guess that writers and bloggers go through this from time-to-time. We lose the inspiration that helped us to persevere and create. We lose focus and allow all the other mundane things in life to take over.

The solution, for me, is now to do what excites me, let go of the outcome and then do it again. That’s what creation is.

I’m back in the saddle again…

What about you?