This is the time of year we go for the fresh start. It has been part of our western culture as a tradition for more than 200 years in its present form. Most Americans focus on self-improvement and that improvement comes in the form of New Year’s Resolutions. Yes, another year has come and gone and we have to ask ourselves; is this the new and improved addition of me or the same old same old we were last year? Do you still have the same Hope to List? Hope to lose weight, volunteer more, eat better, stop smoking, drink less, get out of debt, save money… If you answered yes to two or more, you may be a member of the largest organization in the world, the Procrastinators Club. The good news is there is no need to feel alone; 98% of the population belongs to this organization.
Maybe we need more opportunities for fresh starts other than the New Year. This should fix things, right? By my count we have multiple opportunities. Every 30 days or so – a new month. Mondays – a new week. Need more fresh starts? Each morning – a new day. At the top of every hour – a new hour. Wouldn’t you agree there seems to be an abundance of opportunity.
This leads us back to the Procrastinators Club. So here is a radical idea: start your New Year off by creating a “Do Not Do List.” Limit your list to 10 items. Ask yourself what habits and behaviors are not working for me? Maybe your list includes things like watching too much television. Overeating or snacking after dinner on ice cream and sweets. Over scheduling. Always saying yes to people. Hitting the snooze button on the alarm. Spending too much time on social media or texting. Impulse buying. Sleeping too much or too little. Being late for everything. Lack of an exercise routine. All these habits and behaviors have consequences. Rather than taking action on our dreams and goals in life, we enjoy all the benefits of being a member of the Procrastinators Club…much to our demise.
The very first item on that Do Not Do List: DO NOT renew my membership in the Procrastinators Club.