opportunity to have a fresh start based solely on a calendar date.
In a matter of hours, it will be 2015. As with every New Year, it’s our
What will you do with your clean slate?
According to an article by Leo Widrich on buffersocial.com, fifty percent of all Americans set a New Year’s resolution—and 88 percent of those will fail. I think that is a large reason why many people don’t even try in the first place.
To help change that failure rate, Widrich has what I believe is a pretty sound recommendation: instead of setting a goal, focus on adopting a habit—a tiny one—that may ultimately deliver you to your goal. Here are his examples:
- Resolution: Quit smoking vs. Habit: Stop smoking that 1 cigarette you have every morning after breakfast.
- Resolution: Eat healthy food vs. Habit: Start substituting that 1 daily morning pastry for a banana.
- Resolution: Lose weight vs. Habit: Every evening after work, go for a 2-3 minute run or walk around the block.
- Resolution: Manage stress vs. Habit: Meditate for 2-3 minutes every morning after you wake up.
Doesn’t seem quite as intimidating to set a New Year’s resolution when you boil it down to a simple habit, does it? There’s certainly no harm in trying. The greater risk is in doing nothing at all. After all, mistakes are going to happen. So with that in mind, I leave you with a passage from Neil Gaiman:
I hope that in this year to come, you make mistakes.
Because if you are making mistakes, then you are making new things, trying new things, learning, living, pushing yourself, changing yourself, changing your world. You're doing things you've never done before, and more importantly, you're Doing Something.
So that's my wish for you, and all of us, and my wish for myself. Make New Mistakes. Make glorious, amazing mistakes. Make mistakes nobody's ever made before. Don't freeze, don't stop, don't worry that it isn't good enough, or it isn't perfect, whatever it is: art, or love, or work or family or life.
Whatever it is you're scared of doing, Do it.
Make your mistakes, next year and forever.