How are those New Year’s Resolutions going? Eight of Pentacles vs. eight of Wands

Are you still working on your New Year’s Resolutions? Or like most people, did you give up on them? We like to think of resolutions as 8 of Wands—resolve to do it and it will take off on its own. Instead, resolutions are 8 of Pentacles, start practicing and you will get better over time.

Maybe you resolved to have a dry January and then you went to brunch with friends and had a Mimosa. Maybe you resolved that you would work out every morning and then you overslept and that caused you to miss one day and now you are giving up because you could not keep up with your resolution.

The trouble with New Year’s resolutions is that they are only a desire to achieve a result. We think that if we know what we want to achieve, we must then begin to do it perfectly. Except that we are not perfect. Therefore, they almost always fail. Cut yourself some slack. Resolutions require thinking about carefully. What is the goal we are resolving to achieve?

Is there something you want to learn/start doing/practice? You resolve to do it this year. Then you must think about what routine you need to put into place to do it. One does not do things perfectly from the beginning, part of the process is the learning curve.  Think about the 8 of Pentacles: you must practice. (And practice and practice again.)  And tweak your system until it works.

You decided to do a dry January, and then drank a mimosa? Do not beat yourself up, just resolve to not have any more alcohol all January. If you want to work out more but you missed a workout? Work on a strategy to figure out how to NOT miss your work outs as often. Do you need to get up earlier? To change some of your morning (or evening) routines? A system will make it work.

Of course, you may have started with too big a goal in the first place. Instead, try starting small. You want to work out more? How often do you work out now? Not at all? Fine, then resolve to work out at least once a week. By April, add a second day a week to it. Chances are you can keep that resolution going.  It is all practice. Try to practice and you will find you can keep that resolution after all.

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