Wednesday, December 29, 2004

Be it Resolved...

Ah... December, the time of year when a young man's thoughts turn to... resolutions? Yup, it is getting to be that time of year again, the time to take an introspective look to determine where there is room for improvement and which changes are going to be made. While self-improvement is never a bad idea, the New Year tends to be a very tempting, and convenient, time for many people to make a bunch of unrealistic goals. Many tend to make more of a wish list than a list of achievable resolutions.

As someone who has made resolutions on a fairly regular, yearly basis, I have figured out some important techniques for goal making by comparing my successes with my failures. Since my goal for this year, "Lose weight with Hacker's Diet", was a definitive success, I am feeling pretty confident about next year. At any rate, here are:

Andy's Tips for Making and Achieving your New Year's Resolutions

  • Be Choosey
  • Be Specific
  • Be Quantitative
  • Be Definitive
  • Be Persistent

Be Choosey

Ready to make a change for the better? Well, if one change is good, thirty changes is better! The reality is, if you had a hard time keeping even one of your resolutions from last year, you are likely not able to focus your attention on multiple goals right now. My suggestion is, pick one thing you want to change and really focus on it. Once you succeed, then it may be time to consider multiple goals.

Be Specific

"I'm gonna be a better person" may be a noble goal, but is effectively meaningless. Typically, you just need to put a little more thought into the goal, answering the question "how?". In this instance, in what way do you intend to be a better person? Donate more to charities? Spend more time at the soup kitchen? Or, do you just mean that you are going to stop eating babies?

Be Quantitative

...not qualitative. "I'm going to lose weight" should include at least the general amount you are planning on losing. In my case, though I had not stated it, I estimated about 50 pounds, with the understanding that I would have to re-evaluate when I was near my goal. You need to be able to tell when you have succeeded at your resolution.

Be Definitive

In other words, have a plan. Saying you are going to do something without having any idea how you intend to accomplish it is, at best, self deceiving. For my goal last year, my plan was to read about and follow the Hacker's Diet. Simply setting the goal of losing weight wasn't enough, as it left too much for me to figure out on the way.

Be Persistent

If your resolution is to quit smoking and you slip up, try again! A big reason that resolutions fail is that they are abandoned. The old, "Oops! I 'broke' my resolution, maybe next year!" is a sure-fire way to never succeed at accomplishing your goal.

I hope that helps. I know that taking the time to analyze the resolution process definitely helped me. Stay tuned for my resolutions. :)

Monday, December 13, 2004

Gee, TDM seems to be turning into my own little gay rights advocacy page. :)

Proposal 2 was approved because of intolerance of organized religions. This link does a good job of explaining why church and state should remain seperate.