Welcome to 2024! New year, old attitude? Find out why wishes don’t work
As we say goodbye to one year and welcome a new one, it’s common to make resolutions for the cycle ahead. However, many of us have experienced the frustration of seeing these intentions quickly fade away, giving way to old routines. Why does this happen?
Before throwing ourselves headlong into the new year’s resolutions, it’s crucial to take a moment to reflect on the year just gone. This introspective exercise allows us to consciously assess the triumphs and challenges that have shaped the last twelve months.
Understanding where you are
Evaluate the current state of your life and your business. What have you achieved in recent years? An analysis of the data makes the question more concrete. Identify the areas where you’ve been successful, as well as those where you haven’t done so well. The strengths and weaknesses allow you to choose how you can shape your goal.
Consider the SWOT Analysis Matrix, which allows you to understand that objectives are influenced by strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. Be aware of what can make your goals challenging and also easier to achieve.
Knowing the reasons
But why don’t our wishes work? I’ll share some of the reasons why our New Year’s resolutions don’t work:
An emotion is not a purpose. In the countdown to the new year, emotions are running high, we believe that “this time it’s going to happen”, for every raisin we pass we make a wish, we look around and feel that everything is lined up to happen. This time, yes, the universe will help. Didn’t work out? In fact, without a purpose, a sense of mission, a belief in our dreams, it’s difficult to have the fuel needed to achieve success. What is your purpose?
The real decision comes from within, not from outside. We usually get into this wishing game on New Year’s Eve because someone in the back of the room shouts “it’s almost midnight, let’s eat the raisins and make 12 wishes”, or because it’s simply the time to do it. So, according to tradition, we have to define what we want for the new year, but was it our initiative? No. That’s why it’s harder to achieve any objective or goal, let alone a wish… if it didn’t come from within, it won’t stay within. Believe it!
A resolution doesn’t mean action. We make a New Year’s resolution, we’re sure that this time it will be like that. The question is that in everyday life, with the normal challenges that arise and take us off the path we’ve set, we realize that in reality we’ve created a scenario in our heads that we’re not fulfilling. We need to put it into action, do it, take risks, make mistakes and correct them, fall down and get up, move on. If we don’t act, we won’t win. Full stop.
A new year doesn’t mean a new attitude. Because the year has changed doesn’t mean that everything will change, especially when we maintain our “old” grumpy, pessimistic, problem-focused attitude. It would be great to keep the negative attitude and have positive results, right? Well, Christmas is over and at this time of year we’re not entitled to any more presents. Do you want to be successful in 2024? Then start the year with an (even) more positive attitude, be happy, celebrate life and appreciate everything you’ve already achieved. Believe me, it’s a lot.
Define your goals
A wish is not a goal. Wishing for “something” is simply not enough to achieve it. The right thing to do would be to set a date, a strategy and an action plan to overcome a given challenge. Having a goal implies having a focus, a date, a path to follow. Anything you can’t measure, you can’t control. Work with goals, not wishes.
Consider the SMART model for setting goals. Keep iin mind that each of the steps is:
– Specific: your goal should not be ambiguous. Focus on exactly what you hope to achieve.
– Measurable: tracking progress will keep you motivated and on track. Identify how you will know that your goal has been completed and what needs to be done between the beginning and the end.
– Attainable: Create goals that are grounded in reality. Be realistic and honest with yourself. Recognise your abilities, but also your limitations.
– Relevant: Think about how you will benefit from achieving your goal. It’s important to ensure that the goals you invest in are relevant.
– Time-bound: Define the beginning and the end, focus on long-term but also short-term goals, it’s worth celebrating each step as you get closer to the final results.
May this new year be more than a wish list; may it be a genuine commitment to become the best version of ourselves, one step at a time.
Article by Sérgio Almeida, in partnership with Vida económica