Resolutions around the new year are sorta cliche, but turns out it’s a great excuse to make a public proclamation about something you’d like to do or accomplish in 2013. Lose weight? Eat healthy? Blog regularly? Meditate? Learn Spanish? Whatever you want really.
A few months back, I was doing a little introspection and decided that I needed to smile more. For those who know me, I’m usually a pretty happy guy and someone that always looks on the bright side. But for whatever reason, I’d found myself not smiling enough – and for me, smiling is something that sets my mood right, keeps me focused and helps me to approach problems directly and productively. It’s simple, but something key in my life.
So, I set a goal: I want to smile more.
Seems easy enough, but it was something I really wanted to make sure to accomplish. I needed a way to remind myself to smile. I didn’t want a calendar reminder or an auto emailer or some other trick. How could I remind myself to smile more?
Then it hit me. My belt. At that very moment, I took my belt off and threaded it the opposite way in my jeans (I was actually sitting in a layover in the Long Beach Airport – and removed my belt then and there with a few folks staring at me even). Try it. It is super odd to have your belt flipped the opposite way you’ve been using it for probably all of your life. It’s unnatural which triggers your brain. And every time you struggle to unbuckle or buckle your belt, it’s a great little reminder of that resolution.
Today I still chuckle each time I am forced to unbuckle my belt and I remember for a split second to keep smiling. Maybe for you it is something else – a physical representation that reminds you about your resolution. Try switching your wallet to your other back pocket, put a funny cover on your car key or toothbrush, or do something really crazy like give yourself a henna tattoo on your wrist (real tattoos may not be advised here!)
Good luck on your resolution. Make it something important, simple and something you want to do daily. And hell, try the belt trick. I still smile every time.
*** Postscript: My good friend Joe Scannell took “flipping it” to mean turning it upside down (which was hilarious and awesome when he sent me a photo). I actually meant that you thread your belt through the opposite loop than you normally would, which looks less odd than an upside-down belt. So if you would normally thread it through the left belt loop, use the right. PS: I love Joe for that.