Setting goals for 2022

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Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 28/01/2022 (247 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.

It’s that time of year again — everyone is talking about goal setting. Choose your goal for the year, then work backwards and break it down into monthly, weekly, daily goals. It’s so important to have a vision, they tell us. If you fail to plan, you plan to fail. 
All true, but why is it so hard?
New year’s resolutions are notoriously difficult to keep. In fact, the second Friday in January is known as ‘Quitter’s Day’, as that is when most people ditch them. Gyms oversell their memberships in January because they know the regulars will have plenty of room by February.
The most common resolutions involve improving one’s health, both physical and financial — eat better, get more exercise, quit smoking, save more money. These are all good, common-sensical things, so why do people ditch them so quickly?
In most cases, it comes down to identity. If you have always identified as a certain kind of person, then changing your outer circumstances (appearance, finances) will only stick if you are able to change your inner identity to match. This is why lottery winners tend to lose everything, and people who release a lot of weight tend to gain it back. This inner work, of changing how we see ourselves, is much harder than the external work of changing our eating habits or going to the gym.
Our subconscious minds, set during our childhoods, hate change. They are always trying to keep us in the safe, familiar place we’ve always been, even if we hate it. 
The rabbis called that little voice that tells you not to bother with trying to change the “yetzer ha’ra” — the evil inclination. One could argue that it is not really evil, just scared — true of so many things in this world. Regardless, it is a proficient little saboteur of good intentions.
So how do we quiet that little voice and get on with the work of changing ourselves for the better? 
We know, intellectually, that behaviours and thoughts we took on when we were children in a sometimes hostile world don’t necessarily serve us as adults. If we somehow internalized the thought that we are unworthy of good things, or that no matter what we do, it will never be good enough, then Quitter’s Day is no surprise. It’s merely another opportunity to beat ourselves up, evidence of how unworthy we are.
We have to be able to figure out the program we are running, the subconscious thought that makes us give up before we even begin, or sabotage our results once we start to see success, in any realm. A coach or therapist can help us look back in order to look forward. The intention is not to wallow in the pain of the past, but to understand the shadow it casts over our present and future, so we can be released from its grip.
  
Hadass Eviatar is a community correspondent for West Kildonan. Check out her blog at: http://hadasseviatar.com/blog/

It’s that time of year again — everyone is talking about goal setting. Choose your goal for the year, then work backwards and break it down into monthly, weekly, daily goals. It’s so important to have a vision, they tell us. If you fail to plan, you plan to fail. 

All true, but why is it so hard?

Dreamstime.com Setting goals is easy — achieving them is the hard part.

New year’s resolutions are notoriously difficult to keep. In fact, the second Friday in January is known as ‘Quitter’s Day’, as that is when most people ditch them. Gyms oversell their memberships in January because they know the regulars will have plenty of room by February.

The most common resolutions involve improving one’s health, both physical and financial — eat better, get more exercise, quit smoking, save more money. These are all good, common-sensical things, so why do people ditch them so quickly?

In most cases, it comes down to identity. If you have always identified as a certain kind of person, then changing your outer circumstances (appearance, finances) will only stick if you are able to change your inner identity to match. This is why lottery winners tend to lose everything, and people who release a lot of weight tend to gain it back. This inner work, of changing how we see ourselves, is much harder than the external work of changing our eating habits or going to the gym.

Our subconscious minds, set during our childhoods, hate change. They are always trying to keep us in the safe, familiar place we’ve always been, even if we hate it. 

The rabbis called that little voice that tells you not to bother with trying to change the “yetzer ha’ra” — the evil inclination. One could argue that it is not really evil, just scared — true of so many things in this world. Regardless, it is a proficient little saboteur of good intentions.

So how do we quiet that little voice and get on with the work of changing ourselves for the better? 

We know, intellectually, that behaviours and thoughts we took on when we were children in a sometimes hostile world don’t necessarily serve us as adults. If we somehow internalized the thought that we are unworthy of good things, or that no matter what we do, it will never be good enough, then Quitter’s Day is no surprise. It’s merely another opportunity to beat ourselves up, evidence of how unworthy we are.

We have to be able to figure out the program we are running, the subconscious thought that makes us give up before we even begin, or sabotage our results once we start to see success, in any realm. A coach or therapist can help us look back in order to look forward. The intention is not to wallow in the pain of the past, but to understand the shadow it casts over our present and future, so we can be released from its grip.

 

Hadass Eviatar is a community correspondent for West Kildonan. Check out her blog at hadasseviatar.com/blog/

Hadass Eviatar

Hadass Eviatar
West Kildonan community correspondent

Hadass Eviatar is a community correspondent for West Kildonan.

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