Respectfully Yours: Make new year’s resolutions all year
I often overhear people discussing what their goals are for the New Year. As it often happens, I will be asked, “What is your New Year’s resolution?” I’m not a big fan of announcing my New Year’s resolutions. How can I politely answer the question?
There are two types of resolution makers: people who make their resolutions public and those that keep them private.
If you need social support and want to talk about your goals, go right ahead.
But deciding to remain private about your goals is fine, too.
New Year’s resolutions are something many people set and most are guilty of not following through.
Going public is a double-edged sword. It increases your commitment, but also ups the risks.
On top of the social pressures of telling everyone your resolution, there’s the risk they will witness you doing the opposite and you’re going to feel embarrassed for not following through. For that reason, I’m all for keeping your resolutions to yourself. It’s too much pressure to publicly declare what we would like to change or do differently.
There is no need to drum up excuses when asked about your goals for the new year. Simply saying, “I’m going to keep my resolution private. I feel I’ll be more successful” should be enough to end the conversation.
As always, be mindful of your tone of voice. The delivery of your message carries the weight of the words. Speak in a friendly tone and smile.
Making a resolution on New Year’s Eve that has the potential to burden you with unnecessary pressures is not everyone’s cup of tea.
There are plenty of people who do not feel the need to make changes on this specific day. It’s entirely possible to improve your physical, spiritual and mental well-being any time of year.
Have a question? Email: firstname.lastname@example.org. Jacquelyn Youst is owner of the Pennsylvania Academy of Protocol, specializing in etiquette training. She is on the board of directors of the National Civility Foundation.
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