2017 is halfway over. Where did it go? What have we done? What happened to our goals from January? January 1 is always so full of promise, so full of hope. We have another chance, a clean slate, a new year unsullied by the failures of years past. This is the year, we say, that things will be different. This is the year that things will change. This is the year that life gets better. We think, we plan, we set lofty goals.
Most of us even take some action on January 1. We “start the year off right” with a workout. We figure out a new diet to start. We spend time with our kids. We write out a business plan for that business we’ve wanted to start. We get started on that project we’ve been thinking about.
Then life starts again for real on January 2. The kids go back to school. We go back to work. The kids’ sports leagues resume. Work is busy since everyone’s budget is new and ready to go. Traffic is heavier. The cold, gray suck of January weather sets in. And before long, our plan for achieving our goals goes out the window, swept away by the crushing tides of life.
Like Tom Hanks in Castaway, we can’t seem to get past these tides, instead being repeatedly brought back to the same shore. We stand on that shore watching the life we want get further and further away. Before we know it, it’s July, the year is halfway over, and we’re no closer to our goals than on January 1. And it freaking sucks.
Oftentimes, we then just give up. The stories we tell ourselves at that point vary, depending on our psychology. Some of us beat ourselves up. We laugh at ourselves for being so ambitious, for thinking we could accomplish such things. “I’ll never start that business. Nobody cares what I have to offer. I’ve always been a loser and it looks like I always will be.”
Some of us make excuses, blaming our circumstances. “Losing weight isn’t easy when you get my age, you know. My genetics are awful. Some of those guys can just look at a weight and get ripped. It must be nice.”
Some of us revise history, pretending that we never really cared about those goals anyway. “I’m not really the entrepreneurial type. I like my job perfectly fine. I mean, everyone spends 10 hours at work every day all week, it’s silly to think I should do something different.”
We’ve all been there, in one form or the other. We’ve all set goals that we’ve failed to accomplish. But here’s the beauty of this moment. 2017 may be halfway finished, but it’s ONLY halfway finished. There are still six months left to get things moving. And you can make a lot of progress in six months. You can:
- completely change your appearance through a new eating program
- go from squatting no weight to squatting 225 pounds
- create a prototype of your product
- write several chapters of your book
- start a website and create content
- go on six camping trips with your kids
- go on six dates with your wife
- have six guys’ nights with your friends
Life can change dramatically in six months. Commit to it. Start. Make the last half of 2017 epic. Let it be the time that you do the hard work of getting started, of breaking the inertia. That’s always the hardest part. Once you do that, your momentum will help push you forward. Then you can stand on January 1, 2018, needing only to maintain what you’ve started and being able to look forward to next-level progress, all the while feeling pretty damn great about the man you’ve become. Because you’ll have earned it. That’s all still possible in 2017. Do it. That’s the man’s life. Godspeed.
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