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  • Writer's pictureGary Lougher

Reinvention, Not Resolutions Day 1: Introduction and 6 Reasons Resolutions Fail

Updated: Dec 18, 2023

   Welcome to Day 1. We’ll kick-off with a brief introduction to the series and a list of 6 reasons resolutions fail, with a brief preview of what we will talk about over the next 14 days. We’ll follow up with a short exercise you can do if you are inspired to do so.

  Ever since I realized I had a problem with alcohol, I’ve lived with the question “Why do we do things we know are bad for us?” and its cousin, “Why do we not do things we know are good for us”. This series is my best attempt at sharing what I have learned about that since getting sober 17 yrs. ago.   


  If you’re here, you likely have a history of setting resolutions and not keeping them and, therefore, are asking yourself the same questions.  So, let’s look at those failures as good news, or at least something we can work with. 😊 Because it means you haven’t given up on yourself, AND we learn a lot about ourselves from failure. Fortitude is such a powerful virtue.


  One intention of this series is to share information and experiences to give you insights into your inner world so you can get to wherever it is you want to be, be whoever it is you want to be, or affect whatever change you want to see in the world…whatever you want to call it. My hope is that you share, with me or others, some of those insights, successes, and experiences so that the world can learn from you. We all have something valuable to offer.


This series is not intended to be a “how-to” or “instruction manual”, nor do I claim that everything here will fit into your worldview. Take what works, leave the rest. But please don’t confuse “difficult to accept” with “doesn’t fit”.   


In full disclosure, I do not have this all figured out, and from time to time, I struggle with almost if not all, everything we’ll be discussing. Growth is like climbing a mountain with no top…as is honoring our word to ourselves and others. And as I get better at honoring my word, so goes my life. Every day is day 1, and every day is an opportunity to get 1% better.

  One of the things I currently struggle with is brevity, so let’s get started. 😊   


6 Reason Resolution Fail

·  Ineffective Goal Setting and Planning: Setting vague or overly ambitious goals. Overemphasis on outcome goals vs process goals. Establishing systems of routines and managing commitments to build habits...the name of the game. We’ll also discuss avoiding the “Preparing to Plan” phase, otherwise known as the “buying new gym clothes” vs “just going to the gym” phase.


·  Lack of Support and Presence of Saboteurs – Support can include emotional, educational, advisory, and accountability. Saboteurs can be internal (see self-sabotage, below) or external. Here, we focus on the external saboteurs…those who have an interest in keeping us where we are. Know any? Here, we’ll discuss how to enroll people into supporting us and how to effectively deal with saboteurs.       

·  Procrastination in Disguise: New Year's resolutions can be a subtle form of procrastination. We often use the idea of a fresh start in the new year to delay acting now. It's a comforting thought that we'll tackle our goals later, but this can lead to a cycle of putting off important changes. We will also discuss how we can overestimate future motivation.

·  Ignoring Trauma, Addiction, and Other Underlying Issues: Often, resolutions don't address the deeper issues that hinder progress. Without awareness of these root causes, resolutions remain superficial and less likely to be successful. We’ll also discuss things out of our control like our biology, genes, luck, and our past.  

·  Self-Sabotage: While technically part of “Ignoring Underlying Issues”, we will address it separately. Self-sabotage is the role of your inner saboteur, and it’s one example of how your ego is very good at his job of keeping you safe and comfortable…and stagnant. We’ll talk about some common effects like fear of success/failure, perfectionism, lack of confidence and what we can do about it. We start by listening to the story we tell ourselves and how to change the narrative.

·  Technical and Cultural Evolution are Outpacing Human Evolution: And it’s not even close. Screens, artificial light, noise, hyper and surveillance capitalism, edible food-like substances, office work, social media, and entertainment disguised as “news” and “politics” are intentionally victimizing us…right under our noses. We literally do not have the ability to adapt naturally to it, but there are adjustments we can make. Here, we will discuss the effects, how to identify them, and what we can do about it.

The next two days, we take a deeper dive into, "Ineffective Goal Setting and Planning"


                                        The Exercise                                                

What’s 1 thing you can start doing today, however small, to get you closer to your goal? Do 1 push-up a day, eat 1 more healthy food, etc.

What’s one thing you can stop doing today, however small, to get you closer to your goal? Log off FB or your phone for a ½ hour, drink 1 less soda. etc.

Think "Too Small To Fail"

Whatever they are, consider committing to starting now. Not tomorrow, NOW.

You’re basically starting to program habits. Habits are formed mostly in the basal it some love.  

88 views3 comments



Good stuff, my friend ❤️



One thing I can do today- start reading this blog every evening.

One thing I can stop doing- take my personal Facebook app off my phone so I have to log in manually. Need to stop the mindless waste of time.

Gary Lougher
Gary Lougher

That seems a very good start. And I agree on FB - It is useful up to a point. Thank you for sharing!

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