Every new year brings a fresh beginning, a sense of redemption and hope for bigger and better things. Diets, fitness, worship, friends, spouses and even wardrobes – it is out with the old, in with the new. Funny enough, January is considered “divorce month”. People start looking for information before the New Year starts, but they can’t do much until the attorneys are back in the office. January 12-16 seems to be the magic week for filings.
Not long after, come big ticket events such as the super bowl, Valentines Day, and a plethora of other social events and functions that will lead even the most committed souls to deviate or even outright give up on their blood sworn oaths to change. You see, change from our forever norms which are deeply rooted and ingrained in our DNA, is not as easy or simple as it may seem. Change from these old habits requires more than willpower or faith – it’s deeper than that…it’s a shift in our thoughts, ways, and innate behaviours and even circle of influence. Take a dog that has been exposed to aggression and conflict with others, remove the dog from the fight but you still have the fight in the dog. To change it’s behaviour fundamentally, one would imagine that most drastic changes would need to occur. Cruel and harsh measures like defang, declaw, muffle its bark and dampen it’s senses, expose it to doggy daycares and walks in the park. Now, we have a more docile dog which can identify differently and respond differently from it’s previous norm.
Caution, however, the new version of the old dog is more like a docile puppy, and it and everyone around it, must get used to and learn to like the “new version”, of the old dog.
Change too much and those around you may not like the new and improved. Just ask Coca-Cola.
Kidding aside folks, set goals that are achievable and reasonable. SMART goals, as they call them.
ABCDs of goals… Great Attitude, shift in Behaviour, Commit to goals, avoid Distractions along your way. Celebrate when you succeed, modestly or otherwise, and don’t be too hard on yourself if you don’t. After all, we are all dogs of different temperaments and maybe, just maybe, are happy just as we are.