Why we aren’t making New Year’s resolutions for 2017

As we kick-start the new year, this is the time where we try to shake the rust off as we slow down the holiday eating, start drinking mostly water again, and get ourselves ready to take on 2017. We reflect on the past twelve months – we look at what we did well, things we regret, and how we can improve in the new year. Then, we tend to do something else – we set New Year’s resolutions. 

We all do it. We resolve not to eat fast food. We say we’re going to work out 7 days a week. We create macros for our diet that we say we’ll stick to every day. And we always do stick to them… for a few days, a few weeks, or maybe even until February if we’re lucky. And then we go back to what we’re comfortable with. The issue is we tend to create unrealistic goals for ourselves that we can’t live up to. We set ourselves up for failure. 

So in 2107, we’re taking a different approach. Instead of setting unrealistic goals for ourselves in January that probably won’t last, we’re setting a daily goal to be better than we were yesterday. Rather than one big change, we’re focusing on making little improvements in all areas of our lives. Going to the gym when we can. Running outside to get some fresh air after work. Exploring our Canadian landscape on weekends. Making healthy eating choices as much as possible. And if there’s a day when we can’t do those things, we make an extra effort to do it the next day. We constantly try to improve, and don’t beat ourselves up when it doesn’t work.

Philosopher Will Durant famously said, “We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit.” This year, instead of a New Year’s resolution, we’re making a promise to ourselves to get in the habit of putting our best self into the world. We’re going to constantly work to improve on yesterday, and forgive ourselves when it doesn’t happen.

So let’s get out there, take on 2017, and Live North Strong.