#HappyNewYear2021

We all make new years resolutions, but how many of us follow through with them? I’m willing to bet that the percentage, should we do the math, is fairly small. And yet, every year, we make the same promises.

I would be a liar if I said that I wasn’t guilty of following through with my own. I’ve always made the same promises, and every year, I fail to follow through.

  1. Lose weight
  2. Get in shape
  3. Tone that bod
  4. Eat Healthier
  5. Improve my self Discipline
  6. Be kind(er), in general
  7. Reconnect with long lost friends, family
  8. Make more money
  9. Find ways to make more money, within my means
  10. Finish writing that book I’m working on
  11. Start writing new stories

The list goes on. By the way, does anything on my list sound familiar? Are you currently working on some of the same things?

They are all great goals. My own, and the ones you may be working on, or thinking of working on, but, why don’t we follow through? Why do we make excuses to not follow through?

The question can be answered by one of my very own goals, working on my own, number five. Easier said than done, right? Yes, but I have learned, over the years, that you don’t have to be a master from day one. Sure, that would be ideal. I mean, who wants to put in the time and effort…

Oh, yeah. You do. That’s why you (we) made those resolutions in the first place. But without the discipline to follow through with it, you’re not going to ever succeed. I’m sorry to say, but it is the bold-faced truth.

But, that doesn’t mean it’s hopeless!

You see; self-discipline, like a toddler, or a puppy, or a long-desired lover, has to be chased.

When your son/daughter, niece/nephew, grandson/granddaughter, (etc.) wanders off, do you let them get very far?

How about your doggo? When that little pupper darts off on an ornery journey, do you just sit back and let it?

Finally, what about the most beautiful/handsome, smart/interesting, funny/entertaining person you’ve every met? Do you just say “screw it,” and let them exit your life? Or do you find some way to bring them in?

To all of these questions, most of you will pursue them in one way or the other. You’re driven to do so, by the need to keep the child safe, the loyal doggo entertained, and the desire to be loved by a significant other.

So what does this have to do with self-discipline, you may ask?

Simple. You know the feelings I mentioned in the previous questions? Those feelings that pushed you do find the positive outcome in each scenario? Those are the feelings you need to harness in order to reach the goals, those afore-mentioned resolutions, that I previously spoke about.

Seem impossible? I get it. At one point, I thought so as well.

“But it’s so hard!”

“I’ll never get the things I want, anyway.”

“Why bother. I mean, it’s been a week, and I still don’t see results.”

Sound familiar? It should. I’ll wager you’ve said something like that, at one point or another, right? But, how often do you tell yourself that nothing easy comes for free? Probably not enough, right?

The trick is not to think of things in weekly, monthly goals, but rather, in daily.

“What can I do, today, that will get me what I want the most?”

That is the question you need to pose to yourself most often.

If you work on your self, a little at a time, every day, (AND YOU STICK WITH IT!), you’ll grow accustomed to the new routine. I’ll even bet that you’ll begin to enjoy it, look forward to it, and miss it when you ‘miss’ it.

It doesn’t have to be much.

Seriously.

Take a brisk ten minute walk every morning, until you get used to it. Soon, you’ll want to push for longer.

Replace one helping of unhealthy food, each day, with something that’s more healthy for you. This one’s tough, I’m not gonna lie, but if you experiment with cooking styles and different options, you’ll get used to the new, healthier you, much quicker that you’d think!

Say or do one (more) nice thing every day, even if it’s out of your comfort zone. It doesn’t have to be sickeningly sweet, by any means! There are ways to do this, and still be who you are, you just have to figure out what works best for you!

So you see; working on yourself a little at a time? That’s how you are going to increase your self-discipline. It’s a work in progress, and it always will be! Just like you! We’re always improving ourselves in different ways, right? So it shouldn’t be all that difficult to improve yourself in DIFFERENT ways! If I can do it, so too, can you!

This is me, with my youngest son, nine years ago. This was how I had always been, and who I was used to being. I didn’t believe in myself, or that change would ever be possible.

Three years ago, I underwent a transformation. I followed through with my resolutions, a little each day. November 7, 2020, at the Wheat State Nationals in Wichita KS, I took first place in traditional (Karate) Kata, and second in non-traditional Kata, along with my oldest son, who took second for weapons Kata.

Three years ago, I would have never believed it possible. But, I worked a little bit each day. I walked a little further. I ate a little healthier, and before I knew it, I become the man in the second picture. Fit, happy, and a champion in more ways than pictured.

If I did it, if I COULD do it, so, too, can YOU! Trust me. It’s possible.

A little bit goes a long way.

So, are you still thinking about your new year’s resolutions? It’s not to late to start! Start first thing in the morning. Start at your next meal. Hell, start right now! I believe in you!

Me?

This year, I am going to finish my next book.

It’s time. And if you’ll excuse me, I have some (more) writing to do.

1 thought on “#HappyNewYear2021

  1. I love the Atomic Habits method of doing much smaller goals than you’d initially set, just to get into the habit and build your identity as a person who does said habit. It’s how I finished writing a few novels, as well as learned to read Chinese. A really underestimated method, this. Thanks for sharing!

    Like

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