New Year’s Resolutions

December 1, 2015

New Year’s Resolutions

A New Year heralds new beginnings, a change, a fresh start. But while the intentions are evident, do we really bother with the formality of making New Year’s resolutions anymore? I caught up with a group of savvy local businesswomen to get their take on resolutions.

At the end of the year, as January 1 looms, I find myself devouring naughty food and snubbing the gym – I’ll be really good next year, I promise myself. It’s a ‘resolution’ I make every year, to lead a healthier lifestyle, and it’s one a lot of others make too, judging by the influx of people pounding the pavement, hitting the gym, or opting for an acai bowl and green smoothie in lieu of a decadent eggs benedict with extra bacon.

Research shows of the resolutions made at the beginning of 2015, 75 per cent were kept within the first week, 71 per cent made it past two weeks, 64 per cent extended one month and 46 per cent made it past the six-month mark. But what I wanted to know was, do many people really set resolutions anymore?

Joining me for lunch was Jessica Wicks, owner of Indrah Swimwear; Vivienne Gorman, Director and Property Manager at Gorman and Gray; Kelly Powell, owner of Kapow’s Commercial Cleaning; Bridget Dyer, owner of Diamond Partners Wealth Management; Anne Luxford, Account Manager at Profile Magazine and Tanya Chesterton Smith from Chesterton Smith Photography.

profile: Do you make New Year’s resolutions?
anne: I do end of year planning every year, but I don’t know whether that’s a resolution. I do financial planning and holiday planning so I know going into the next year what my goals are. That’s as close as it comes to having a New Year’s resolution.
jessica: No I don’t, I don’t believe in New Year’s resolutions, I think you can make them at any time of year, it doesn’t necessarily have to be a New Year’s one. I’ve never done them.
kelly: I don’t do them either, I never have.
bridget: I kind of did last year, it wasn’t even the new year, it was around October and I thought my life cannot be the same this time next year, something has to change and unless you change it yourself it doesn’t happen, you just plod along.
jessica: I think that’s what I find, I’m doing it constantly, it’s something I’m always thinking of.
vivienne: I used to … but now if I feel like one part of my life is falling I know I have to work on that area.
kelly: I tend to make decisions based on what opportunities pop up. It may have some planning around it as it happens, but it’s around opportunities, not a day or a year.

Something has to change and unless you change it yourself it doesn’t happen, you just plod along.” BRIDGET DYER

profile: Does that also translate into your business?
bridget: I think business-wise you have to, when you’re on your own you’ve got to set weekly or monthly goals because it’s very easy to fill your week with stuff. You know where you want to be in five years, but you’ve got to have the small steps to get there. Personally as well, I try and practice what I preach, so budgeting and that sort of thing, but I don’t live by it, I don’t get up and think, ‘what am I going to do today?’

profile: Why do you think people set New Year’s resolutions?
kelly: It’s starting fresh for some people.
jessica: I think it’s so they can get some momentum.
anne: It’s good to look back at what you’ve done and how you can do it better and the beginning of the new year is a great time to do that.
kelly: I’ve never stuck to anything that I started at the beginning of the week or at the end of the year. I think it’s because if you really want to do it, you’ll just do it, it doesn’t matter what day of the week it is and if you don’t want to do it, it’s not going to happen. That’s why I don’t do the New Year’s thing, I think it’s nice to see an old year out and a new year in and you hope for new opportunity.

profile: Does setting resolutions put too much pressure on achieving goals?
kelly: Some people really like saying, ‘On the first I’m going to do this…’, I’ve got friends who have 12-month, 18-month, two-year, five-year, 10-year goals – I couldn’t even tell you what I’m going to do tomorrow; I know what I’m doing, but they’re not goals, they’re not set in stone. We’ve had so many things pop up, if everything was locked in we wouldn’t have been able to go ahead and do them because we weren’t flexible.
jessica: That’s so true. That’s something I found in my life when I was younger, my teachers would get me to put down a five-year plan and I struggled with that, ‘I’m going to earn this much money, I’m going to do this and that,’ for me that doesn’t work. I don’t believe in that concept for myself.

profile: In setting goals, does it help to have them written down or portrayed on a vision board?
jessica: A vision board would be my idea, I scrapbook notes and things but I’m not definitive, ‘this is what’s going to happen on the fifth year’.
bridget: If you’re too structured with it and don’t integrate it into the flow of your day or your life, when you don’t hit it at that time it can be quite disappointing, rather than doing really well with something.
anne: I’m somewhere in the middle, I’m not unbelievably structured, but I’m not unstructured. If I didn’t have some sort of organisation or milestones I don’t know how I’d go with it.
jessica: I find I go with the flow, but with an intention.
bridget: You don’t want it to become a job, you don’t want it to be tedious and another thing to do, you just want to know what you want and figure out how to get there, but not be too hard on yourself.

profile: What are your goals for 2016?
bridget: To survive my first year of business, I’m well and truly surviving, but I have goals in that regard.
vivienne: Every three months have a weekend away and go somewhere we haven’t been before.
bridget: I’d like to go away more on weekends too, sometimes you feel life happens when you’re planning it, you need to unwind and recharge, so that would be nice.
anne: To have more weekends away. I love to try and go to different places, so we try and go somewhere new and exciting and have a new adventure, even if it’s up to Montville for a weekend.
jessica: I’ve got a few friends who are leaving the Coast, so I’d like to make some new friendships.
kelly: Our daughter is moving back to the Coast and our son starts Grade 11, so making sure we continue to spend the time with them. And from a business perspective, I’d like to keep the momentum going.

With a clear vision of prospering businesses and vows to take more breaks throughout the year, the lunching ladies and I left feeling refreshed, and energised and ready to take on the new year. Bring on 2016!

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