Holland & Usry January 2020

You Don’t Need Resolutions to Instill Change WHY NOT NOW?

I’ve always found New Year’s resolutions to be an odd concept. Statistics state that 80% of them fail by February. And yet, at the beginning of every year, it seems like everyone steps back up to the plate to attempt resolutions once again, whether or not they failed in the past. Why not take a different approach to making changes? Life is often a series of starts and stops. Things change, people come and go, you get a job, you lose a job. There are endless patterns of change to the average human life, and often, our time becomes largely about keeping up with those changes. For that reason, there’s a lot of power in making concrete decisions for how you instill the change you want to see. With this in mind, the question becomes a matter of when , not how. I can distinctly remember when this outlook first presented itself in my own life. I was about halfway through my second semester of my sophomore year of high school, and I had just met with my guidance counselor to pick out classes for the following year. Admittedly, I had been underperforming, but I told her, “Don’t worry, I’m going to apply myself to my work next year.” I remember her setting my file down, looking me right in the eye, and asking, “Why not start now?” I stared back at her for a few seconds and realized I had no acceptable answer to that question. I may not have known how big an impact this moment made on my work ethic and mindset when it was happening, but when I think back on it, it’s easy to see the change it ingrained in me.

truth is this: If we keep putting them off and keep pushing their start dates to “next Monday,” “after the holidays,” or “in the new year,” then we truly never will accomplish them. Lifestyle is not something you can, or should, let fall to the wayside. It doesn’t work that way. Whether you’re striving to be a good parent, a devoted child, a valuable employee, or a healthy dieter, you have to give it your all, and you have to give it all the time. Life is not about making resolutions — it’s about adopting a lifestyle. Take our practice of law for example. We don’t have the option to put things off or wait and say, “I’ll start on that case in the new year.” We have to focus and apply ourselves at all times because our work touches many more lives than just our own. If you’re a fan of resolutions and are part of the 20% who do manage to stick it out well past February, then by all means, make your list. However you can find inspiration to do more and be better, I encourage you to do it. But I will still stand firm on that one question I was asked all those years ago: Why not start now? I’ll bet many of you are just like me and don’t have a reasonable answer. So, whether or not you make hard-and-fast resolutions and whatever your aspirations may be, there’s nothing stopping you from beginning the journey to achieving them today. Go for it.

We all have ambitions we want to chase after, dreams of “somedays” that seem like they’ll never be “todays.” And the

“We all have ambitions we want to chase after, dreams of ‘somedays’ that seem like they’ll never be ‘todays.’ And the truth is this: If we keep putting them off and keep pushing their start dates to ‘next Monday,’ ‘after the holidays,’ or ‘in the new year,’ then we truly never will accomplish them.”

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