We’re one week into 2019. The resolution season is still going strong. Left and right people are talking about how to make your resolutions work or why they don’t work. I had something else planned for this post but I got a brainwave and it wouldn’t let go. So I had to write on this subject instead. And what’s the lesson that’ll make 2019 your year…Learn your lessons
Look, you are motivated to make changes and resolutions because the year section on the date is changing. Am I against New Years resolutions? Absolutely not, I’m a big fan of them. It’s likely that the reason you want to change whatever it is comes down to a lack of satisfaction and while change is the answer it must be set on the right foundation.
How did I get here? So whatever it is that got you creating affirmations, writing on sticky notes and throwing stuff into the trash on January 1st, stop and ask yourself; how did I end up here? And here’s a practical approach. Write down the highlights of 2018 and lows as well. Next to each high or low write down what you learned from it. Take the time to write, I’ll wait.
And learn the right lesson while you’re at it Perhaps the biggest problem we face is our poor ability to infer in life. Inference is the method by which statisticians for example determine things about a population based on a sample of population. When we do this incorrectly we can learn the wrong lessons from a situation. Just because it always rains on Tuesdays doesn’t mean it rains because it’s Tuesday. So look at those lessons you wrote down.
Are those the right lessons? Are they the real lessons?
Is it really impossible or did you not do enough? Maybe you don’t really want it, maybe you do but feel you don’t deserve it? Do you really dislike the situation or dislike it when you think what others will think? If you learn the wrong lessons no resolution can fix that. It’s like trying to navigate Harare with a map of Havana. When the GPS says “turn left” you turn straight into a vendors musika.
You will push and push on a door that says pull and be making more resolutions in 12 months time about the same thing.
Friends and family are really good at pointing out some of these things. They can see us better than we see ourselves and with added benefit of being emotionally removed can see the solutions clearer than we do. Don’t swallow it wholesale but do investigate what they say. Could it be true?
Let’s get the terrain right before we make resolutions. I know most of you didn’t bother to write down like I asked you to earlier and that’s ok. You get a chance to do it in your own time. List those moments and explore the lessons. Look at your life in that area since the event(s). Are you behaving like a person who learned their lesson?
It is said we optimize for what we analyze. Well if you’re sitting there thinking your goal isn’t happening because of one thing when the real problem is another you will push and push on a door that says pull and be making more resolutions in 12 months time about the same thing.
It’s not all doom and gloom, learning our lessons is key to growth. It helps us identify pain points and what to work on but only if we are looking at the right thing. That’s my one thing that’ll make 2019 your year – or your money back. Thanks for reading. Kudzai G Changunda