January is two weeks old today. So are your resolutions.
You did make resolutions, didn’t you?
Yeah, well, that might not actually be a good idea. I know, it’s quite a tradition, and everyone does them, right? So how could resolutions be dangerous?
Here is why:
1) Resolutions feel good the day you make them. They might even make you feel powerful and determined. Which is good.
But sadly, that feeling gets turned upside down very quickly: As soon as you realize you’re not able to stick with them. Then they make you feel bad and incompetent.
2) Most people create resolutions that are way too big and absolute. Like “I will write every day, no matter what!”
Which means you’re setting yourself up for failure. Which in turn creates a negative mindset and a subtle expectation of failure. “Not good enough” is a common enough feeling, not just among writers. You don’t need to reinforce that feeling with resolutions that are impossible to keep going.
3) Most resolutions are created to follow external expectations. No more smoking, finally losing those extra pounds, working hard… they just add pressure to your life, and they are not even about you.
And seriously, the last thing you need in your life is more pressure. Stress kills creativity. I’m not saying you shouldn’t quit smoking or get more exercise. But if you pile it on like that and rely on pure willpower to make it happen for the next month or two – you’re killing your creativity just to please others. You’re stepping away from who you really are. Bad idea for a writer, don’t you think?
What can I do instead?
You could choose a small habit to add to your day.
Writing a journal (I write in my diary every morning). Or doing a little planning session after breakfast so you know exactly what you’ll do in your day.
Anything that will help you be more organized and more prolific, but nothing that requires enormous amounts of willpower. Because willpower just runs out.
What do you do regularly that helps you be productive? Let’s collect some great ideas to help each other in the comments!
Image source: F. Moebius
PS: I offer one-on-one coaching to help you overcome blocks, mental traps and be both happier and more productive. If you’re interested in learning more, click HERE and send me an email. We’ll work out together how I can support you best.