Happy New Year!

Photo by vencavolrab/iStock / Getty Images

Welcome 2017!

For my first blog of 2017, I decided to keep it simple. Well, simple for a complex surgeon. ;-)

If you don’t already know me pretty well. I have a lot of ideas. Sometimes I can’t stop them from popping up in my mind. Well, I am just going to let it flow. You know… “stream of consciousness.” Where I made a great deal of progress in 2016 was putting ideas into action.

They did not all work out exactly how I pictured it. However, I am very satisfied with where I am.

How do YOU usually approach the New Year? Do you like to make resolutions?

My wife has been awesome with the process. For the last several years, each of us shares our individual resolutions with the family over our New Year’s Dinner. We each go around the table sharing our predictions, goals and resolutions for the next year. She takes notes, and we read them back to start the process each year.

Each year, we learn more and more each year about ourselves, especially how to set realistic goals; ones we can achieve within the following year. We try to motivate each other.

You can debate the entire New Year’s resolution process. Some people love it. Some hate it. Many people have made tremendous improvements at this time of year. Others (about 80%) just experience failure, yet others year after year. Most failures are the result of 1) unrealistic resolutions, 2) forgot resolutions as time wore on, 3) unable to measure or track success or failure, and 4) too many resolutions all at once.

Last year I resolved to keep a daily journal. I tried really hard. I stayed on track for about 2 weeks. I stayed close to on track for about 3 months. It just didn’t last.

Ironically, it was still a major success!!!

While there is much to be gained from daily journaling, our time feels very limited. I just could not consistently make the time. However, my real goal was to be writing (or blogging) more.

My once-a-month blogs were so difficult. I am a recovering perfectionist, and it is particular highlighted in my writing. I can’t tell you how many things that I have started to write, but never finished because it was not good enough. Now I am blogging regularly, publishing, and growing in my writing skills and comfort.

What I have learned!

  1. You can make goals or resolutions any time of year.

  2. You can succeed in ways that are different than your original goal or resolution.

  3. You are more likely to succeed when you …

a. Keep things simple, focusing on mastering one or few things at a time.

b. Have an accountability partner or someone that encourages and guides you.

c. Have resilience and a positive attitude to keep trying even when you don’t at first succeed.

d. Are inspired to do what you are trying do.

e. Find somehow to invest the time and energy no matter how little you have. One minute is better than nothing at all.

What do you think?