I don’t make resolutions. While committing yourself to some action or new behavior based on an event like the entry of a new calendar year seems logical, I find the concept flawed. Too much expectation and pressure, such as that placed on New Year’s resolutions, does not foster the right environment for change in one’s life. Often these resolutions are emotional reactions to missed opportunities, envy of others or the desire for more physical possessions.
To be meaningful, resolutions must be born from life experiences, which happen throughout the year. Success is achieved when you can capitalize on that experience and desire to change or improve your circumstances when the situation is upon you.Thus, I tend to make resolutions throughout the year not on December 31st; however, this year is a bit different. It may be because of the cumulative circumstances of this past year or my advancing age but I find myself motivated to make a single resolution for this coming New Year: accept less mediocrity. Accept less of it from my clients, my staff, my business, my peers and most of all, accept less mediocrity from myself.
Too often I’ve accepted a “job well done” compliment as a measure of success. It satisfied my ego and placated my need to be relevant. On the reverse side, I’ve accepted friendship and good will as trade for promised deliverables only half or poorly delivery. I’m not certain if it was fear of change or the fear of success that held me back, but I was too often satisfied with just enough. On occasion throughout these past few years, across my personal, social and professional experiences, I’ve found myself needing to push beyond such mediocrity and demand more to maintain my personal equilibrium and sanity. I did not pre-plan or resolve to do so, it was merely a reaction to hitting a wall or a breaking point. The surprising result was that I achieved greater personal happiness or success when I pushed through whatever personal or emotional obstacles stood in my way or that that of my colleagues. Sometimes the immediate results were negative, caused concern or hurt feelings, yet in each case the long-term result was positive because it resulted in progress.
I moved forward.
Inspired, I’m publicly declaring my New Year’s resolution to accept less mediocrity. I’m going to question, demand and expect more of myself and everyone around me. Regardless of the outcome, I’ll know there were no stones left uncovered, no thoughts left unexplored and no sentiments left unexpressed. No regrets.
Have you accepted mediocrity this past year? What causes us to do so? Join me in this pledge?
Feed Your Community, Not Your Ego