(NOTE: TODAY’S POST IS A CONTINUATION OF YESTERDAY’S. TO START AT THE BEGINNING OF THIS ESSAY, SCROLL DOWN TO PART 1 AND MOVE UP FROM THERE.)
2. By stubbornly insisting that change can be wrought through sheer force of will, we may miss other ways that our problems can or should be solved.
As you probably know, one of the first steps in my book, The House That Cleans Itself , is for you to admit that if you struggle in this area, you are probably never going to change your behaviors and thus must change your house instead. Implementing the HTCI plan really does eliminate mess and clutter and allow you to keep the place continually clean with so much less effort that sometimes it almost feels as if the house is cleaning itself. (Hence the title.) So which would you rather have: even more years of good intentions, failed resolutions, and continued mess, or a house that stays pretty clean much of the time? My vote is for the latter, of course.
Here’s another example to support this reason for why I'm against New Years Resolutions. “Catherine” was a smart girl who was a B and C student for most of her life despite hard work and very good intentions. Known to her friends as a major airhead, Catherine was forever bringing in her homework late, finishing huge assignments then forgetting to turn them in at all, showing up for class and learning to her surprise that she had a test that day, and so on. Because she wasn’t hyperactive and presented no behavior problems, Catherine had never been evaluated for learning disabilities or neurological disorders.
Her parents began to suspect that something more than mere forgetfulness was going on, however, so they pursued testing for their daughter. In the end, Catherine was diagnosed with Attention Deficit Disorder/Inattentive Type. (The same kind I have.) They decided to try medication, and though it took some time to find the right drug and dosage, to say that her diagnosis and subsequent treatment changed her life is a gross understatement. These days, Catherine’s parents cannot believe that their competent, organized, efficient daughter is the same absentminded, foggy, airheaded girl from before. They love to share this shocking fact: She started taking the correct medication at the beginning of the 11th grade, and her grades grew so consistently high that she has made the Honor Roll (in high school) and the Dean’s List (in college) every single semester since. Now a junior in college, she continues to make almost all A’s every semester while holding down a full class schedule and a part time job as well. If her parents hadn’t looked beyond the need for mere self-discipline and willpower to solve her problems, Catherine’s story would no doubt have unfolded quite differently.
Had Catherine or her parents looked only to “doing better” and “trying harder”, they would have missed the bigger issue here, not to mention its solution.
BE SURE TO COME BACK TOMORROW FOR THE NEXT PORTION OF THIS ESSAY.