Replace your Resolutions with a Plan

I’m not a fan of New Year resolutions. Why? Three reasons:

  1. I stink at them.
  2. I feel compelled to think them up on the last day of the year, in a post-holiday coma, with no clear plan of how I’m actually going to accomplish them. (Is it any wonder that 88% of New Year resolutions fail?)
  3. They promise hope but deliver guilt.

So we’re 23 days into 2012—how are you doing on your New Year resolutions? Odds are you’ve slipped up a little here and there. That’s assuming you haven’t tossed the whole idea after temptation tackled your willpower in a moment of weakness and beat you back into submission.


The good news is you can start all over today (if you want to). Today is the first day of the Chinese New Year. Don’t worry though, if you need more time, you could wait until April and celebrate the Hindu New Year. After that, you’ve got Rosh Hashanah in September or even Hijri New Year in November.

You see, what you know as January 1st is actually an arbitrary date that was set by Pope Gregory XIII in 1582. That’s the year he introduced the Gregorian calendar to correct astronomical inaccuracies in the Julian calendar the Romans used. It took over 300 years for most of the world to adopt the Gregorian Calendar, but today we don’t give it a second thought.

The truth is, every day is the start of a new year.

That’s what gave me the idea for The Leap Challenge. If January 1st is essentially a random start date, then why not take January to recover from the holidays and get used to writing 2012 on everything. Starting February 1st, we could take an entire month to set ourselves up for success—refining our vision, gathering support, developing a plan, and preparing to execute it. Then on Leap Day, February 29—arguably the most astronomically arbitrary date in our calendar—we could take the leap on accomplishing not just a resolution but one of our biggest dreams.

If you’re interested, then join us for The Leap Challenge and trade in your hasty resolutions for a fighting chance at accomplishing one of your biggest dreams.

How do you feel about New Year resolutions?

12 thoughts on “Replace your Resolutions with a Plan”

  1. Thanks for the reminder that every day starts a new year. Too often we get caught up in the past and the future and forget that we really only have right now! Not much we can do about the past except learn from it. We can plan for the future, but there is no promise that we will ever get there. Too many things can happen today to keep us from seeing tomorrow.

    We need to live today in our efforts and relationships as if this is all we have, because it might be. It’s the start of a new year and we can start it with gusto!

    Great reminder!

    1. Thanks Richard. You’re right, the present can be powerful—as long as we’re not brooding over the past or worrying about the future.

      Thanks for stopping by and have a great day!

  2. I set New Year’s Resolutions every year. I do this because I am a very goal-oriented person. Also, I have found that if I set 10 goals, I usually reach at least 5 of them. There’s something about the act of just writing them down that gets me to accomplish them. BUT, I also feel like I am not as effective as I could be. I tend to focus on too much and would like to simplify that area of my life too. I’m looking forward to The Leap Challenge!

    1. I’m with on focusing on too much. I tend to paralyze myself with options and projects. I’m excited about the Leap Challenge too. I’m looking forward to doing one thing really well—and helping others to do the same!

      Thanks for sharing!

  3. Hey great post. I truly belive is someone puts the focus, passion, and effort on a goal, then they can and will reach it. Even if you think the goal is out there, you’ll never get close to it if you don’t try. It also doesn’t hurt to have multiple goals to plan for. I will definitely take your advice and actually write down plans for achieving my goals!

  4. Reblogged this on The Thought Mishmash with JTH and commented:
    I wanted to share this with all of you. Something to think about, folks. Creating a plan truly is the best way to reach your goals. You’ll never get even close to achieving something unless you try. I will be participating in the leap challenge. Good luck in all of your adventures this new year! God bless

    1. How does one “outsource” New Year’s resolutions? Did you have someone write them for you, or is outsourcing your resolution? It would be an interesting experiment to have someone write them for you.

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