How to keep your New Year’s resolutions — The New York Times posed this question to Austin Frakt. Frakt suggests that we ask ourselves 2 questions:“Why don’t I do this already?” and “Why do I feel the need to do this now?”

These are good questions. As a Psychologist, Psychoanalyst and Master Career Counselor, in addition, I encourage people ask these 2 questions: (1) why do I want to make this change? (2) what are the advantages to not making these changes?

Keep your New Year’s resolutions

And, what are the benefits of not making this change? The answers to number 1 are often easy. You resolve to lose 2o lbs. And, you want to do it so that you can look, “cut” or “buff”, or fit into your clothes, or look attractive to potential partners, or lower blood pressure medicine or something else.

Or, you resolve to identify and pursue your career goals. And you want to do that because you are unhappy at work, you are not paid enough, you don’t like the work, you don’t like the organization, you don’t like the pay, and more.

What are the advantages to not making these changes?

The answers to the second question are more challenging. At first blush, often, people can not answer it. What are the advantages to maintaining obesity? Understanding them is often a more elusive task. Does remaining overweight allow you to avoid certain social situations? Or, does it allow you to hold yourself back in some way? Or, do you use food to manage and regulate your anxiety or moods? Or, is it something else altogether?

What about your workplace dissatisfaction? What are the advantages to staying in that old familiar, underpaying job that you hate? Is that more comfortable than entering into a competitive setting? Are you afraid of the assertiveness that a new role might require? Are you an under-achiever as an unconscious way of retaliating against your parents? There are many possible explanations for this inertia.

To read more about this topic, check out these articles.

  1. Identifying your career goals
  2. Designing a plan to achieve your carer goals
  3. Overcoming obstacles that interfere with achieving your career goals
  4. My job, my life and why I am not thrilled (published by the Washington Business Journal)
  5. Psychoanalytically-informed, career assessment
  6. The role of unconscious conflict in career counseling (published by the National Career Development Association) for career counselors, mental health professionals & interested laypeople)
  7. Understanding the role of transference in career counseling (published by the National Career Development Association) for career counselors, mental health professionals & interested laypeople)

 

 

 

 

 

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