It’s that time of the year again: time to make New Year’s resolutions. That special moment when you tell yourself all of the ambitious lies you’ll think about aggressively for the next week and then completely forget about by the time February comes around. With the creation of these resolutions comes one major urge: the desire to share your list with everyone you know. However, there are four very good reasons why it’s best to not share your New Year’s resolutions with anyone:
1. You Won’t Be Held to Do Things That Aren’t Important to You
Ambition gets the best of all us – especially when it comes to New Year’s Resolutions. We set goals we can’t possibly accomplish and, more importantly, goals we don’t care about accomplishing.
Out of our natural desire to want to become better at everything, and our inability to avoid being influenced by other people’s goals, we all put things on our list of resolutions that aren’t really important to us. We say we want to lose weight, we say we want to become better writers, we say we want to make amends with the people who have wronged us – because those are the kinds of things we’re expected to want for ourselves.
Here’s a question though: do you really want those things? Why try lose weight if you have a healthy body image? Why work to be a better writer if you write for Sherman Ave? And why try to make amends with everyone when some of those people are complete shitheads? Yes, there are valid answers to all of those questions, and pursuing all of those things is noble and healthy, but they’re not things you need to hold yourself to as your top priorities if you’re not that passionate about them.
However, that’s exactly what will happen if you share your resolutions with everyone: you’ll be held to those things. If you spend the first week of the year telling everyone and your cousin that you’re going to eat healthier, you can bet your ass that you’ll hear something from someone every time you go buy a burger. Even after you decide you don’t care about your resolution, your friends and family will pressure you to keep up with it and judge you when you “give up” (i.e. realize it was a dumb resolution).
Save yourself the trouble and annoyance and keep your resolutions to yourself – it will make everything a lot easier.
2. You’ll Avoid Looking Judgmental
I like to call this the “Parents Who Don’t Drink Phenomenon,” mostly because I spent the entirety of my two weeks at home feeling like I couldn’t so much as think about alcohol without looking like Satan himself.
Basically it works like this: when you tell people you’re going to do something to improve yourself, those people will feel worse about themselves for not doing those same good things. Even if you’re the nicest, most open-minded person in the world this will happen. The second you tell everyone you should cut back on your drinking, those people will think you judge them for not doing the same. This is especially true when you’re in the presence of people similar to you. Tell your friend who’s the same size as you that you want to lose weight and, all of a sudden, your goal becomes a personal attack.
Is it unfair? Maybe. Is it something to consider before advertising your resolutions? Definitely.
3. It Will Make It More Likely That You’ll Actually Accomplish Them
It works like this: When you share your goals with people, they will congratulate you and give you admiration for pursuing those goals. Those positive sentiments will resonate with you and give you satisfaction – the type of satisfaction you would get from actually accomplishing those goals. Since you already have those positive feelings, you care less about accomplishing those goals. In short, telling people your goals makes you feel like you accomplished them – and causes you to not to care about actually accomplishing them.
So if you’re concerned about sticking with your resolutions and you don’t just make goals to get an approval high like a sociopath, it’s probably best to keep your New Year’s resolutions to yourself.
4. People Will Like You Better
Well they won’t necessarily like you better, but they won’t dislike you.
There’s no science or psychology in this, just fact: there is almost nothing more annoying than someone who brags about everything that they’re going to do. Just think about going down your timeline and seeing everyone posting “Oh my gosh! This year’s gonna be sooooo good. My resolutions are to do this bullshit, try out this bullshit, and remember to stop bullshitting my bullshit when I bullshit.” Have you ever looked at one of those posts and thought, “Wow! I’m inspired by you and hope you accomplish all of your goals and more!”? No. You think, “Hey asshole, why don’t you get off Facebook and go do those things so I don’t have to see any more of your posts?”
If for no other reason than to avoid annoying the hell out of everyone you know, please, for the love of God, just shut up about your New Year’s resolutions.
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