The right side to resolutions

Photo of a tortoise.

Welcome to 2024!

Did you make any new year’s resolutions? Did you break them? Did you secretly make them and call them something else (like goals)?

Did you decide that there is no point in making resolutions? Because, after all, they don’t last past the first week.

The upside to resolutions

The cynic in me knows that there is only one second difference between 2023 and 2024. There’s no need to make a fuss. And I also have a history of broken resolutions.

But this year I realised a fundamental truth about new year’s resolutions:

We make resolutions because we believe in our ability to change and be better.

We never make resolutions to do worse at something. That is true whether it is about eating habits or learning new skills or behaving better in a relationship.

You might have rolled your eyes at me because that seems obvious. But think about it for a moment. It’s not just a belief, it’s a fact. We can change. We can make our lives, and the lives of those around us, a little better.

That’s a powerful thing.

The downside to resolutions

So why all the broken resolutions?

We don’t fail because that belief is wrong. We fail in the implementation. We fail because we take the “big-bang” approach. We want to change everything, all at once.

We’re impatient. We want instant results. We don’t start exercising by walking an extra flight of stairs. No way. We start by planning to go to the gym six times a week, probably at 5am when we would normally be asleep. Of course we will fail.

The right side to resolutions

We don’t have to fail. We just need to change our approach to implementation.

Kaizen is a Japanese term that means “good change”. It’s a business approach to continuous improvement. Toyota is famous for its use of Kaizen. But we can apply it to our personal lives.

Kaizen is about gradual change. It’s a philosophy that the best (and most sustainable) way to improve is to do so slowly and in small steps.

One thing I’ve learned from practicing aerial lyra is that I often don’t get a move right the first time. I am more likely to fail hopelessly. It might take me dozens of tries before I get it right once. Then I might get it right once in ten tries. Then once in five tries. But if I keep practicing, eventually I get it right more often than not. (Of course, if I don’t keep trying, I’ll never get it right.)

That’s true of everything we do. There’s a reason why the tortoise won the race.

My 2024 wish for you

My new year’s wish for you is that you remember that you can change your life for the better. And that you approach things the Kaizen way.

You might not get it right today. Maybe you’ll only get it right once in ten times. Then once in five times. But eventually, you’ll get it right more often than not. And your life will have changed for the better.

I love hearing your comments.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Thank You

We're Excited!

Thank you for completing the form. We're excited that you have chosen to contact us about training. We will process the information as soon as we can, and we will do our best to contact you within 1 working day. (Please note that our offices are closed over weekends and public holidays.)

Don't Worry

Our privacy policy ensures your data is safe: Incus Data does not sell or otherwise distribute email addresses. We will not divulge your personal information to anyone unless specifically authorised by you.

If you need any further information, please contact us on tel: (27) 12-666-2020 or email

How can we help you?

Let us contact you about your training requirements. Just fill in a few details, and we’ll get right back to you.