Are your Resolutions Really Smart?

Happy New Year!! New Year, New You… Resolution Time.

How many of us in that week before New Year’s Day, set resolutions or resolved not to set any resolutions because after all it won’t stick?

How many kept last year’s resolutions or even remember them?

We all have done it.

Yet the New Year, the changing of the calendar, the ball dropping, wishes for a better next year bring visions of the future and what we would like it to be. Wall calendar

Webster’s Dictionary defines resolution as “something that is resolved” (definition 3). It echoes definition 1 which includes the act or process of resolving, such as the act of analyzing a complex notion into simpler ones

 So, resolutions are about ideas.  I’m going to lose 30 pounds, read 60 books, learn the piano, find the love of my life.  Simple statements that hide complex notions. But all are about taking a great you and making you even better.

We cannot just think or wish these things into being. It may begin with the thought and the feeling but…

What we really want are outcomes…. results.

Will I meet the love of my life sitting on my couch? (Online only relationships do not qualify as the love of your life)

Will I lose 30 pounds sitting on my couch. Unless I never get up to eat and that’s called starvation.

I might read 60 books sitting on that couch if I have them handy or on an e-reader app and turn off the TV.

blindfold-target-261928430-ss-1920You’ve all heard of SMART goals.





Time-bounded (deadline)

We have all made a resolution at New Year’s or during the year… weight, job, smoking, relationships, self-improvement and at one time or another didn’t keep them.

Why? What are we missing? Were our SMART goals not smart enough? Let’s look at the ever-popular New Year’s lose weight resolution.

Let’s suppose we each resolve to lose 30 pounds. It’s specific with respect to weight and measurable (assuming we have a scale). Depending on our starting and our ending point, we will work on the assumption that it is reasonable (healthy).  It is probably attainable if it is reasonable.  It does lack being time-bounded.

Let’s refine it by saying we will lose the weight by Memorial Day weekend and that the time frame is reasonable.

We start that diet on January 2.  We eat the right stuff, join a gym and go every day to start. And just like last year, many of us drift back to status quo. By March, we feel guilty about that new gym membership that we pay for but don’t use.

Why did our SMART goal not work?

I believe the answer to that is that we must BE SMART.


Because. We must BE clear on our WHY. We are making a resolution, looking for an outcome, Because we want……. What?  question mark

We must get clarity around what we value and what is important to us. Is it connection, freedom, beauty, fitness, respect, fun, family, self-esteem or a combination of value words? The ones here are just a few possibilities. You can fill in your own or if you’d like a longer list to think on, email me at


Whatever future we might envision, we must have clarity about what we value so that we can create a future that aligns with those values and set the right goals to achieve it.

Write down 3-5 values words that resonant the most with you. How does your resolution/goal align with any of those words? Share in the comments below.

Once there is clarity about the Because, then action can begin.

Results require action. Real results require planned sustained actions.  That requires the other part of BE.


Next time I’ll discuss ENERGY and its part in engagement, focus and  energy falters.




What do Ebenezer and George Have in Common?

It’s that time of year for family, faith/spirituality, trees, shopping, cooking, gatherings and binge-watching Christmas movies.

white popcorns inside of a red and white popcorn box
Photo by Pixabay on

Two of my classic favorites are A Christmas Carol and It’s A Wonderful Life. I watched these movies this week through the eyes of a Core Energy Coach. (see my previous post for an introduction to Core Energy Leadership and Catabolic and Anabolic Energy.  I began to see the energetic journey similarities in Ebenezer Scrooge and George Bailey.

They both start the movies in very catabolic states. They feel victim to their surroundings. Scrooge is angry and feels put-upon, a victim of those who would celebrate the season and share their joy and good fortune (however much or little that is) with those less fortunate. Bah-humbug!  When we first meet the adult George that Clarence is to save, we find that George feels like a powerless victim, invisible and unnecessary. He feels as if his life has been for nothing.  He is a victim of circumstances that seem to have thwarted his dreams.

Through flashbacks, we learn that both Ebenezer and George start life “knowing” that their purpose is to escape their current environment. They do not belong where they are and feel separate from that place and the people. But how effective is it to run FROM something as opposed to running TOWARD something? If you do not know your purpose, see yourself as part of a greater fabric, and where you are going to, you may end up trapped and a “victim” of life.

In A Christmas Carol, we learn through The Ghost of Christmas Past, Ebenezer is trapped in boarding school, away from home and family, feeling unloved and unworthy.  As he cannot initially escape boarding school, he throws himself into his school work hoping that in exceling he can be found worthy. He focuses on numbers and, consequently, money. It is quantifiable and, for him, a measure of self-worth.scrooge boy

He feels a victim and angry. So he will “show them” by accumulating more and more of his surrogate for worth – wealth/coin and through it power over others and a feeling of self-importance.  He is living with destructive Catabolic Energy.

For George Bailey in It’s A Wonderful Life, we see that in his early youth, he would pull the lever in the drug store and always say “I wish I had a million dollars”. Of course, this toy seemed to award the wish. His plan is to “shake the dust” of his hometown off and “see the world”. Money would give him freedom.  We even see him degrade his father’s choice (although perhaps unintentionally).  But his father’s stroke and death, interrupt George’s plans and take him unwillingly down another path. He feels trapped by forces outside himself and forced into taking over the Savings and Loan. George becomes an apathetic victim. Another level of draining catabolic energy. Of, course Mr. Potter is a case study all by himself.

Through the intervention of Marley and the three spirits of Christmas, Ebenezer raises his Core Energy. He is “redeemed” and establishes connections with those around him and empathy. He steps away from the ego-centered catabolic energy and into the joy of self-transcendence. He has seen that he is part of the whole of mankind. He vows to keep the Spirit of Christmas in his heart every day.

With the help of Clarence, George raises his awareness of how his actions changed the lives of so many people and raise his energy to a very anabolic level. We watch George’s reactions move from apathy to anger to compassion for those whose lives were made worse by his not being born. Then, in the final scenes, George realizing that he wants to go back to the original world and accepts that he will face personal consequences for the loss but that others will be better off, finds inner peace and returns to his reality.  There It's a WOnderful Lifehe is greeted by the final lesson that he is part of everyone and everyone is part of him, when the town pours in to support him. His clearly apparent joy is made even greater when the bell rings on the Christmas tree and it is pronounced by Zuzu that it means an angel (Clarence) has gotten their wings.

I believe that these movies resonant for me because of that inner journey the characters go on.  I want to go there with them, to the peace and joy of the final scenes, the healing that occurs to get there, to becoming the best version of myself.

We are all not Scrooges or George Baileys in their opening state… well not entirely. But we all want to become the best versions of ourselves. That’s why I do what I do. I believe we all want that better version of ourselves looking back at us in the mirror. We want to realize our highest potential.

Isn’t that what New Year’s resolutions are about?

Wishing you a Happy and Healthy Holiday Season and an Anabolic 2019.giphy happy scrooge