Tip #703: Why Make Anti-Resolutions?

My New Year’s Resolution List usually starts with the desire to lose between ten and three thousand pounds.” Nia Vardalos

Welcome to 2018. I hope it is kind to you.

The media strongly encourages us to make positive changes in our lives in the shape of New Year’s resolutions. But Stephanie Vozza believes that the resolutions we make only reflect what we think we should do- not what we truly desire and are willing to put in the work to make happen. As a result, most resolutions are unrealistic and almost immediately forgotten.

Ms. Vozza’s offers an alternative in her article: Why You Should Make An Anti-Resolution List (And What To Put On It).  She quotes Kate Hanley, the author of How to Be a Better Person, who provides the rationale: “Making an anti-resolution list gives you an opportunity to identify some of the ways you’ve been making your own life harder, and then use that awareness to stop doing (at least one of) those things.”  why-you-should-make-an-anti-resolution-list-and-what-to-put-on it?

According to Mike Vardy, the author of The Front Nine: How to Start the Year You Want Anytime You Want, anti-resolutions are similar to Lent, when people give up something.

To start us off, Ms. Vozza lists nine behaviors to stop doing:

  1. Stop biting your tongue.
  2. Stop working with bad clients.
  3. Stop using disclaimers.
  4. Stop making excuses.
  5. Stop feeling guilty.
  6. Stop putting off work that needs to be done.
  7. Stop overcommitting.
  8. Stop spending time on social media.
  9. Stop rehearsing unhappiness.

However, her suggestions seem very general. This is contrary to Mr. Varda’s recommendation that it is better to say: “I will not eat fast food ” instead of: “I will make healthier eating choices.”  As he explains: “It’s more specific. And we all know what the end result will be.”

So, in the interest of specificity, here are a few of my anti-resolutions, in no particular order:

  1. I will not forget to back up everything I put on iTunes. (I just spent an entire week uploading approximately 600 CDs to iTunes because I discovered that all of the songs on iTunes and on my iPod that I had uploaded over 30 years had been erased somehow. The silver lining: I now know all of the music I own, so I can be much more creative playing music at training programs.)
  2. I will not forget to make time to have a real breakfast. (When I do, I get very cranky and eat much more the rest of the day.)
  3. I will not forget to wear a hat when it is cold outside. (If my hairdo looks pretty good, I hate flattening it under a hat. But -11°F trumps vanity any day!)
  4. I will not forget to eat a meal instead of chocolate for breakfast, lunch or supper. (Yes, it definitely calls my name, but it is also definitely not a meal.)
  5. I will not forget to look up, down and straight ahead when trying to find something on a shelf. (It is such a waste of time and so humiliating when I can’t find something that is right in front of my face, even though I have my glasses on!)
  6. I will not forget to stop and give my geriatric cat attention when he yowls. (He’s old and decrepit and yowls when he is scared, hungry, craving attention, using the litter box…)
  7. I will not forget to actively market my services instead of waiting for something to happen. (If I’m passive, there will be no passive or active income.)
  8. I will not forget to stop and stretch every hour when I work on the computer. (I’ve been known to work nonstop for hours, which is incredibly hard on my eyes, my back, and my general health.)
  9. I will not forget to walk for at least 10 minutes a day. (I’ve got to start somewhere…)

I’m sure there are many more things I want to stop, but these nine are the first that came to mind.

So, will you make resolutions, make anti-resolutions, or forget the whole thing?

May your learning be sweet.



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