Sunday, 8 January 2017

New Year's Resolutions and Going Pro

Nicki Edgell

The new year brings with it new year's resolutions for many. Whether these are for improved health and fitness or embarkation upon an academic pursuit our resolve is usually to improve aspects of one's life for the better.

Of course there is no particular reason why anyone need wait for the new year in order to make a resolution, but it is traditionally a time when we have such thoughts - the new year marks the end of a previous year (2016 in this case being a year that many have considered a particularly challenging one on a worldwide scale) and presents an opportunity to begin afresh. The timing therefore helps overcome general inertia and procrastination that tends to exist throughout the year when thoughts turn towards new projects. It also represents a reasonable time separation from the difficult to avoid excesses of Christmas making it a natural time to think of abstaining from alcohol, overeating, and beginning a detox for January if that is your area of resolution.
Only a week into the new year many people will be realising their resolutions may have been too ambitious.
But what if your resolutions are proving too difficult to maintain? In such cases don't beat yourself up too much. Be realistic. Don't give up entirely but scale back and rebuild slowly.

The Plank
For example I started an exercise program (something I had been thinking of doing for many months) - this was actually a 4 week/28 day program that promised to change your body in only ten minutes a day. Stupidly I threw myself straight into it and pulled a muscle in my back on the second day forcing me to abstain for a couple of days. I realised the exercises were extremely difficult for a "beginner" but rather than give up completely I am pursuing the program more gradually; for instance instead of holding a "plank" position for the prescribed 2 minutes (!) I aim for 45 seconds and I'll build from there.
Resolutions can often be strengthened if made public or shared with others.
Incidentally it is also easier to follow such objectives with friends and family. Even if others do not join you in your pursuit, make your resolution public. I invited people to join me on facebook so we could share and support each other. To see how we are all getting on please have a look at my post in my Nutrition and Healing facebook group below...

Targets and deadlines are particularly useful drivers for achieving goals. I've spoken about the power of 30 day challenges before. But again, if you have been too ambitious it is not the end of the world to readjust. A couple of years ago I attended an excellent self development course where attendees had to set themselves a 90 day plan with objectives. I did not reach my very ambitious objective after 90 days but extended it and subsequently achieved my aim after 180 days.

The War of Art by Steven Pressfield
Recently I have been reading the War of Art by Steven Pressfield. Pressfield is actually a historical fantasy writer so a lot of the book is written in the context of being a writer, or by extension an artist of some kind, but the philosophies are pretty much applicable to any pursuits. How often do we tell ourselves that we will do this or that, but only once we've done something else or something else has happened? - we will fix the house once we have the money, we will go travelling once our children have left home, I'll be happy once I have a boyfriend, I will write once my summer house is built, I'll travel across America once I've saved for a car, I'll get a new job when I've passed that exam... the list is endless. We put off, delay and procrastinate what we really want to do, because our situation isn't quite right. But guess what, it is never going to be quite right. The secret to pursuing our dreams is to simply start! The great writers and artists did not wait for the perfect environment before they began. The War of Art is all about overcoming such resistance.

Pressfield writes that once a commitment is made to starting, all sorts of things will fall into place - "the moment one definitely commits oneself, then providence moves too. All sorts of things occur to help one that would not otherwise have occurred. A whole stream of events issues from the decision, raising in one's favour all manner of unforeseen incidents and meetings and material assistance which no man would have dreamed would come his way."

But what about waiting for inspiration or your muse or a feeling or a message or epiphany? Don't bother, just get on with it. Put yourself in the position you need to be in order to achieve what you want to do. If you want to write, then get up and sit at your desk and write, every day, religiously, like clockwork.
I write only when inspiration strikes. Fortunately it strikes every morning at nine o'clock sharp.
Treat it as your professional job. Long before you are making any money from your pursuit go pro, and treat it as your profession. Call yourself a writer. Don't say it's just a hobby. "Fake it 'til you make it" as they say. When classic writer Somerset Maugham was asked if he waited for inspiration before he wrote he answered yes, he did, but luckily he found it happened every morning when he went to work!
Get in, and stay in, the game.
Similarly Woody Allen famously said that "80 percent of success is showing up". If you put yourself in the right place to succeed (ie. you simply show up at the right place at the right time) you are half way there (or 80% the way there according to Woody!).
...and a Mind Map based on the War of Art courtesy

So, if your new year's resolution is to have more sleep then go to bed earlier. If you want to read more books, then guess what, you've got to put the hours in and read more books (instead of watching TV, facebooking, or going out). If you want to spend more time with your children you've got to cut the office hours and be in a position to be around at home when they are. If you'd like a more intimate relationship with your partner you've got to put yourself in the physical location where this has a chance to happen. If you missed new year's day, just start now, don't wait another year! There are sometimes some short cuts and some tricks you can play on your mind, but more often than not you simply just have to make practical changes, apply some will power, and just do it! Setting yourself reasonable specific goals and deadlines will help.

For details of the highly recommended self development course known as Humans Being More please contact me.

Best wishes for a happy and abundant 2017.


About the Author

Nicki Edgell

I am a clinical Psycho-neuro-immunologist, Metabolic Balance Coach, Natural Nutritionist and Independent Nikken Consultant. I practice in Brighton in the South of England, helping individuals and groups towards the health, vitality and the life they want for themselves. I work under the principle that wellness depends on a balanced holistic approach to living, in all areas of your life: your body, mind, family, community and financial health all have an impact on your wellbeing.


  1. Do many golfers mix and match brands of clubs? As a newbie, I'm hoping that the G30 driver will suit me as I bought the G30 irons and would like a matching set purely for aesthetics.
    I appreciate your input!


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