New Year’s Resolutions Don’t Work, Continuous Improvement Does

Journeys in Construction

New Year’s Resolutions Don’t Work, Continuous Improvement Does

2019 on the road ahead, 2018 behind in the rear-view mirror.

It’s a tradition that every time a New Year comes around, we reflect upon the past and resolve to improve the future. Some of us make lists of proposed changes such as, “I will stop doing this and start doing that.”

On the one hand, this is positive, but on the other, it may not be the most effective way to affect change. Of course, it’s good to set goals and work toward them, but various studies indicate that most New Year’s resolutions are broken in a short time. The reasons for this vary, as do the solutions. 

A while ago, I read this article which explained a lot more, with citations and links to more information:

“Statistics show that only 9.2 percent of people ever achieve their New Year’s resolutions and break free from their bad habits.”

In the past, I often struggled to accomplish my New Year’s resolutions. Sometimes I was cynical about making resolutions. Then I decided to be more strategic about improvement.

Here is a list of tips that help me to change;

  • Don’t wait until the New Year to make changes. Start now.
  • Be organized. Write down goals and motivations for achieving those goals.
  • Consider the big long-term goals and break them down into small steps.
  • Plan and schedule to gradually make those incremental changes.
  • Review progress every week, if not daily, and adjust as necessary to stay on track.
  • Always focus on continuous improvement.

Hopefully that helps you too.

I want to be more helpful and encourage everyone to do the best they can. That’s kind of vague, but that’s what I’ve been working on and is one of my New Year’s resolutions.

More specifically, for a few months, I’ve been thinking about making a website as an extension of my business card for consulting work. Also for a long time I’ve thought about making a blog for sharing information about my journey in construction, posting career advice, explaining practical tips and tricks, etc. Then I had some free time and decided to get a head start on what I intended to be a New Year’s resolution to do later. It’s not much to look at yet, but as I keep working on it, little by little, it will grow.

“Practice the philosophy of continuous improvement. Get a little bit better every single day.”

— Brian Tracy
Continuous Improvement - Road Sign


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