“I can’t! I just can’t.”
When we have tried to achieve an elusive objective but have yet to reach it, futility often replaces striving. Making the same promise to ourselves month after month and year after year can be frustrating. When that promise is shared openly with others, the promise can also become embarrassing. We know we have failed and now everyone knows it.
Here is a short list of common examples of falling short: lose twenty pounds, stop smoking, go back to school and graduate, read more books, find a better job, eat only healthy foods*, play the violin*, volunteer in my community, visit family and friends more often, give blood*and tell those you love that you do. Those marked * are on my personal list.
An honest assessment may show that some objectives were important when they were set and remain achievable. When that is true, it makes sense to restore our commitment until accomplishment is complete.
A few objectives may have been quickly and poorly conceived. In those instances, you may never have been truly committed. You likely knew early on that no action was ever intended. Nothing of value is lost when they are dropped from the list.
Between really important objects and clearly trivial ones, there is a vast middle ground. That is the area in our lives where we waffle. We don’t make an all out commitment nor do we strike them from our list of our objectives. For example, I waffled about playing the violin for years. I finally gave my violin away and decided to play the kazoo instead. Maybe I never really meant to play the violin. Finally, I am being honest with myself. (Please, contact me if you need a kazoo player for your next party or wedding.)