I have mentioned before that I faithfully prepare a written reflection on the previous year and a list of intentions for the New Year. It is an annual event for me. Nothing unusual or rare there. Probably one of the most interesting things is, I keep each list. I have a folder of resolutions. A bit like a ‘to do’ list that hopefully gets done and ticked off as completed. I shall explain later why I keep my New Year resolutions.
For now, let me share some of them with you.
- Learn to say ‘No’ and stick to it
- Make an effort not to criticize others
1997 New Year Resolutions
- Meditate regularly
- Exercise .. get fit .. get active
- Build confidence, get real
1998 Intentions List
- Plan my week / work my plan
- Work according to a priority list each day
- Spend quality time in the garden every weekend
Each year has between 8 – 10 good intentions and the above are just a couple from the three years listed. So let’s reflect on the successes and failures of 1996 /97 /98.
I believe real evidence of a successful New Year Intention is when it is achieved and maintained during that year and the years to follow, if relevant. For example, if your intention was to give up smoking and you took it up again in three years time, would you see that as a success or a failure? A young woman I spoke to recently was discussing her intentions for 2012 and mentioned that she had given up smoking a few years ago so didn’t really have any new resolutions for this year. I wonder if most people have just one main resolution? “I resolve to … this year!!” Or a list of ten intentions, like I do. “I am going to start doing this, stop doing that and change my approach to this or that concept or behaviour.” However, if your resolve was to move house or change your job it would not be reasonable to think you need to do that consistently. Once it is done it is done. There has been success! Well done you!!
So … my favourite intention is from 1998, point one on my list. Plan my week / work my plan. I believe I borrowed the concept from Stephen Covey, “Work your plan and plan your work”. It was prior to this time when I first met up with the Franklin Covey planning and diary system. There is an Australia web site where you can view the different diaries and planner systems (see it here). I have found the planners invaluable in creating order in my daily life. One of my problems is that I sometimes forget to look at the diary, I write things down and plans tasks and actions to do and then am remiss in checking the task list. Maybe I could take a note to self of that well-known Christmas Carol “.. making a list and checking it twice..”
Oops! Was that a failure?