New Year’s Resolutions Gone Wrong

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Happy New Year!

Whether you welcomed the New Year at a party, in front of the TV, or, on Sunday morning when you finally got up, there’s no dispute. 2017 is here.

And, where are you?

New Year’s Resolutions are a time-honored tradition in society.

Out with the old.

Ring in the new.

“I’m gonna be better than ever!”

All that stuff.

Sounds great, right? Inspiring. Lofty.

But, then why do most people never follow through on their resolutions? Why is it that only 8% of the 40% of people who actually make these resolutions actually achieve them?

Well, some may be out of reach.

Some may be way too complicated.

But, I believe that another factor is that people don’t take enough time to look at the actions that got them where they are in the first place, and, work on changing those actions.

For example, let’s say someone wants to their marriage to be healthier. That sounds nice, right? A common one I hear from clients is, “I’m not going to get so angry when my spouse does ‘fill-in-the-blank.’”

But, time after time, they feel like they are failing. Why? On some level, they are putting the responsibility on their spouse. Spouse A thinks “I’m not going to get so angry when my spouse does ‘fill-in-the-blank.’” For all you football fans out there, means; “I am going to work on my defense, which, by definition, is dependent on their offense.” So, you’re left at a disadvantage, because who knows when Spouse B is going to do that really annoying thing? And, really, really? Spouse A’s reaction to Spouse B is far more a reflection of A’s own self-perception rather than B’s behavior.

That is really what they need to address, understanding why your reaction is happening in the first place.

I think this is in line with why a lot of second marriages fail. The first divorce happens with all of the responsibility being thrown where it may, and, it is very easy to place the blame for divorce on whatever shortcoming you perceive your spouse to have.

So, people go into their second marriage confident that since they aren’t marrying the same person, the marriage will be different/better.

But, they forget that they are still going into the second marriage. So, if they haven’t looked inside themselves to create a better and healthier way of looking at themselves (defense) and, then the world (offense), then, chances are the same unhealthy dynamic will happen again. Different spouse, different playing field, same playbook.

So, when you make that New Year’s Resolution, or, before you stop working on the one you made, look inside and see what work you need to do on you.

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