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Photo credit: Brigitte Tohm

The “New Year’s resolutions”that can’t fail

This year I don’t have any New Year’s resolutions. Lets face it, they suck….

Usually you don’t achieve them and then in 3 months, 2 weeks or even 2 day’s time, when you fail, you beat yourself up for not achieving your resolutions again this year. It sucks!!

So what to do? Just don’t do anything this year……

Luckily Tim Ferriss brought out a new book over the holiday and in this book he gives you a very good idea.

He has an interview with Scott Adams, the creator of Dilbert, and the following is a short excerpt from the book:

Systems vs Goals

“This involves choosing projects and habits that, even if they result in “failure”in the eyes of the outside world, give you transferable skills or relationships. In other words, you choose options that allow you to inevitably “succeed” over time, as you build assets that carry over to subsequent projects.

Fundamentally, “systems” can be thought of as asking yourself, “What persistent skill or relationship can I develop? versus “What short term goal can I achieve?” The former has a potent snowball effect, while the latter is a binary pass/fail with no consolation prize.”

Keeping this in mind I tried to figure out a system I could put in place that would teach me something, where even if I failed, I would learn something valuable.

I came up with the following challenge for myself:

The point of this is to learn new skills or improve skills that I feel need improving. This can be done in any area of your life. Maybe you want to do the “Wake up 5 minutes earlier challenge”or the “Take lunch to work and don’t buy food challenge” it can be whatever you want. Just don’t create a binary pass/fail resolution this year.

Try to make it fun, make it something that is going to challenge you and that you can learn from. The goal is not to shoot for the moon here but just to make small incremental improvements over time.

I need to go figure out what my first book is going to be now…. So if you will excuse me, I’ll see you again next week with my first summary. I absolutely guarantee you the first one is going to suck compared to the last one I do.