I read some interesting statistics on New Year's resolutions of which I wasn't aware. Apparently, something like 40-45% of American adults make resolutions. Of those who make resolutions, the numbers sticking to their resolutions continually dwindle over the course of the year. Eventually, less than 50% of people who make resolutions actually keep them. That comes out to 20-2% of Americans who make and keep their resolutions. It's not a great success rate, but the upside is that people who set resolutions make more progress than if those who never set them at all.
Looking back on 2009Anyhow, it's another year down, and another year of New Year's resolutions for me. How did I fare with last year's goals? Not great, but not too bad. I didn't do great with my goal of having more "me" time. I did end up having more time for myself by virtue of quitting my job with my last tyrannical boss and taking up a new job with a new company run by sane people. On the other hand, my time just filled up with other things. Some of those things were out of my control, like my wife being in her tenure review year and thus shifting a lot of responsibilities to me. Other factors were under my control, like my habit of try to do too much.
My goal of getting into a consistent I-Liq Chuan training was also a mixed success. My personal practice habits were pretty hit or miss all year. I did manage to get myself into consistent daily meditation practice though, and I did manage to get my class started. I've been told that my spinning hands has improved despite my poor practice habits, so I've managed to accomplish something with regards to my ILC training (if not as much as I'd hope to accomplish).
As far as my fitness goals went, I think I was also only half successful. I finally got the handstand, though it's a little wobbly and I can't hold it for more than 4-5 seconds. The iron cross goal was too ambitious, but I can actually get my arms out to maybe 60ish degrees, which is far better than it would be if I had never made that goal. I can do a dragon flag and almost do a full front lever, but both of those strength skills aren't rock solid yet. I got up to a 70 lb weighted pull up and dip (just another 80 lbs to go for the 2X bodyweight goal). Deadlifts maxed out at 225lbs for me, so I'm still about 75 lbs shy of the 2X bodyweight pull there. I didn't meet any of my fitness goals, but I knew they were too ambitious. I just made really good progress towards them.
Looking forward to 2010So, what are my resolutions for this year? Well, I'm going to try being less ambitious this year. I'm intentionally not going to make any fitness goals. I'm just going to continue having fun working out with my buddies and continue making steady progress to the goals I set out previously. I'm also going to purposefully not make any specific goals of improving my Mandarin, picking up my guitars again, dropping my body fat, etc. My only two goals this year are to:
- Simplify - There was just too much going on last year. It was too easy to get overwhelmed. I had no chance of pursuing anything when my plate was so full that I didn't even know where to begin. So, this year, I'm going to try to cut out more unnecessary items from my life, in terms of material things, pointless tasks, and mental clutter. If I can simplify my life, then I'll be better able to get back to other goals I want to pursue.
- Improve my I-Liq Chuan - I know, it's a goal every year, but I've been told I'm supposed to test soon for my student level 5 and instructor lever 2. That means I can't be so lackadaisical about my personal training. So, I have to get my own training in on a more consistent basis in addition to teaching classes. On the flip side, I also want to raise my students' level of understanding and get them ready to start testing and to do more partner oriented training.