Disclaimer: Nothing new you will read in this post, treat as a rant if you want.

It may be a bit early for a New Year resolution, but I know some people who like to plan way ahead. New Year resolution itself may seem like planning ahead, but it's not — at best it's just a declaration of some intentions.
Nevertheless, what is my problem with New Year resolutions?


You have more opportunities to watch an eclipse in a year than to make a resolution. To be precise, any given year, you have at least two solar and two lunar eclipses. Yeah, I know, you can say that new year resolutions are symbolic and I take it too seriously, but the problem is, it is the same as "starting next week I will…" or "from Monday onwards I'm going…" — do I take them too seriously too? Does anyone even take them seriously?
This is how you really should read a New Year 2019 resolution: "I have been doing these bad things and not doing these good things for the entire 2018. This list will probably remain relevant in 2019 as well."


Here is the list of most common resolutions:

  • Exercise more
  • Lose weight
  • Get organized
  • Learn a new skill or hobby
  • Live life to the fullest
  • Save more money
  • Spend less money
  • Spend more time with family and friends

These are vague intentions. Vague intentions are not very actionable. What prevents you from living life to the fullest, exercising more or saving money? How much more? How do you even approach that?
These resolutions are formulated to induce procrastination. I wrote before about how to formulate tasks to avoid procrastination.

Now you can see that New Year resolutions are pretty much confessions of procrastination and not become a better version of ourselves.

Resolution of resolutions issues

Let's break down, what these resolutions actually mean.

Exercise more

Exercise for 30 minutes every other day at home at the same time using your body weight.
Description: Pushups, triceps dips, squats, Bulgarian squats, lunges, burpees, crunches, situps, plank. Soon you'll grow to get a gym membership. Just maintain the schedule.

Lose weight

See "exercise more". Watch your calories for a couple of weeks — there are apps for that. Figure out where the excess comes from and try to cut it a little or replace with less calory-dense food. You don't need to starve yourself.

Get organized

Hey, you started exercising regularly, isn't that organized? And what exactly did you mean by "get organized"?

Learn a new skill or hobby

What's with the old ones?

Live life to the fullest

Just exercise.

Save more money

Easy one — set up an auto-deposit to a savings/investment account. Even seemingly the most insignificant amount deposited regularly is better than nothing.

Spend less money

This can be as hard as quitting smoking. It is easy to see on what you spend money — there are apps for that, but it's hard to change spending behaviour. Do some research, ask for help — there are financial advisors, somebody has to keep you accountable.

Spend more time with family and friends

Get them to exercise with you. Also, they probably have similar resolutions, so you can learn new skills together.

Resolution of the resolution of resolutions

Have you noticed that addressing even a single item on this list, when broken down to what you actually need to do, may present a real challenge? What happens if you have many items? Right. Nothing happens. It's just too overwhelming. It's too much.

What to do? — You don't have to cut the list. Just do one step at a time. Start with physical health — exercise regularly. This will trigger drinking plenty of water, better food habits, better sleep, better mental health — then you'll feel ready for the next challenge, whether it's a new skill or something else.

Also, since you have a clear plan what to do — why wait for the New Year or next Monday. Start today!