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The Thing About New Year's Resolutions

Updated: Feb 19, 2022

Happy New Year!

How are you feeling at the start of this new year?

Hopeful? Exhausted? Maybe a bit of both?

Whatever your mental state, no doubt you have started thinking about how you can make 2022 one of your best years ever.

This thought process usually begins with a New Year's Resolution.

Like many, I have made New Year's Resolutions in the past, only to give them up a few weeks into the new year.

Some of my more successful prior New Year's Resolutions included not checking my email until I arrived at the office (which lasted for about three months), spending less time on social media (a constant struggle) and hiring a personal trainer (which actually lasted about a year).

Prior to the pandemic, and for my entire life, I was a workaholic.

Truth be told, I was bullied early on in high school, and the only way I knew how to deal with the inflicted shame was to escape to boarding school and then strive for success in the academic and business worlds as a salve for my psychological wounds.

Here is the link to The Story of the Denim Jacket, which highlights the mental health challenges that resulted from that bullying incident.

In this state of mind and rushing from meeting to meeting in my professional life, I rarely made time for healthy activities. I didn't realize what a strain the devotion to my career was having on my health and psyche.

The situation came to a head eighteen months ago, when I fell extremely ill and spent a week in the hospital. I easily could have died.

My failing health was attributed to poor life choices made amidst a general malaise about my entire existence.

This harrowing experience forced me to make important changes in my life, including quitting my high-powered job and simply living the life that I want to lead. A life without others telling me who I am or what I must do. A life without judgment and hopefully with purpose and satisfaction.

Now, unlike before when my calendar was filled with back-to-back meetings, I make time for yoga and meditation, so much so that Peloton notified me that I am in the Top 10% of all of their yoga users.

All of which makes me think about what it takes to make a New Year's Resolution stick. If I could go from never doing yoga to becoming one of Peloton's top yoga users, how can you make true behavioral change in your life, which is one of the hardest things to do?

So here is the thing about New Year's Resolutions: when your resolution actually is a matter of life or death, it will stick.

This observation leads me to some additional insights:

If you ascribe a meaningful level of importance to your resolution, then you probably can achieve it.

Making your resolution a part of your daily routine immediately will increase the chances of success, since we are all habitual creatures.

Finally, when you have a loved one who can help hold you accountable, you are well on your way to achievement.

Perhaps it is best to embody a word with the same etymology as resolution, which is resolute. Here is the definition:

admirably purposeful, determined, and unwavering.

We should all try to approach life in a resolute way, if possible.

So this year, my New Year's Resolution is to continue to produce high-quality original content for the Social Musings by Austin website, Apple podcast and YouTube channel that entertains, inspires and helps you make important changes to improve your life.

I promise that I will do my best for you; although, that might mean I post two or three articles per month rather than once a week.

Whatever the case, I know that I am in a position to go to the next level with my music, podcast and website, and I have a plan to accomplish this.

So how do you plan to level up this year?

I hope you can join me on my journey, and I expect you to hold me accountable to my 2022 New Year's Resolution.

Furthermore, I wish you success with your New Year's Resolution and would love to hear about it in your comments below.

Good luck!

Please be sure to stay tuned in to the Social Musings by Austin stable of media outlets, as later this month I will be interviewing the incomparable Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. in the next installment of my Interviews with Dead People series.

Past interviews can be found here.

Have a wonderful start to your year.

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