We all know the pros and cons of New Year’s resolutions (mine is at least one blog post a month). Ditto on recognizing the importance of self-improvement, organizing, and setting new benchmarks being a quarter of the battle. The rest is actually doing.
Yeah, yeah, Amy. What’s your point?
Regardless of your resolution success rate, don’t forget to dole out space for the yearlong refresher that can happen anytime: Spontaneity.
Often, if we fail to reach a goal it’s not for lack of trying. It’s because we’ve overloaded our schedule, life showed up in our utopian world of flawless to-do list execution, or someone we care about needed extra attention. Nor am I talking about those pick-me-ups that provide a boost (i.e. a Starbucks trip and finishing that great book instead of cleaning out the hall closet). I’m talking about spontaneity within your goals. Sometimes an unexpected mental shift or deliberate boycott of spring-cleaning is exactly what we need to move forward. They aren’t character flaws. Instead, think of them as your subconscious trying to help you accomplish what you must.
For example, social media can be fun and an important networking tool for professionals. However, it can also become a roadblock to productivity, fast. If I’m hot and heavy in a draft, there are days I don’t check my accounts. I accept this about myself, knowing how important these tools are for a writer trying to break out in publishing. But I must give myself the freedom to know that if I wake up and the solution to a plot problem in chapter fourteen occurs to me, nothing will stop me (expect my two huskies needing to be walked first) from getting to my computer and/or fountain pen. If it’s the last day of the month and that blog post isn’t done, I accept my energy is needed elsewhere. The blog entry will have to happen two days into the new month and it’s okay because I’m not ignoring the goal. I’m adjusting to make things work. Isn’t that one of life’s ultimate goals—flexibility to achieve results.
So don’t forget to include in your “new you” plan the ever important component of spontaneity. While sometimes a roadblock is just that, the unexpected can also direct us where we actually need to go. Capitalizing on the real magic—recognizing your efforts toward your endeavors—will refresh the mind and soul, and provide a new start all year through.