Every year, many people make promises to themselves, vowing they’ll set a goal for the new year, and stick to it. As the new year goes by, some achieve their goals, others don’t. Even disabled people do this, including me. Sometimes I fail, sometimes I succeed.
How realistic are these resolutions? How practical and doable are they? Setting goals should be done within the person’s abilities, disabled or not. Achieving goals can be done efficiently and successfully if you have a plan of action and realistic goals.
The problem with many New Year’s resolutions is, the goals aren’t clearly thought out, and may be unrealistic, like losing 50 lbs in one month. It won’t work without causing serious harm.
There are many things we can aspire to do, which can be included in our daily routines. Goals help enrich our lives in ways we don’t often realize. Start out simple, and work your way up. It’s like anything else you don’t become a professional piano player overnight, do you? Practice is the key.
As disabled people, we’re told we can’t do very much, but those who say that are just shortsighted. I know many disabled singers, musicians, and others of various professions. Many are also activists, because we know we must speak up and stand up for our rights, even if we’re sitting down.
It’s no fun calling attention to our needs, and having to focus on them instead of our goals, but we can set goals that include these activities. No one knows what you need unless you tell them. They don’t know we exist unless we let them know we’re not a “silent minority.”
It doesn’t mean we have to be radical about it to make a point. In these times, it seems people aren’t willing to make the effort to make themselves heard, for fear of backlash. If we don’t stand up for our rights, they’re just going to keep stomping all over us. Resolve to be assertive in what you need and want.
We can resolve to help each other as well as ourselves. Disability can happen to anyone in any situation, due to accident or illness, from birth or after. My impairments happened before I was born. There are so many disabled people who have no one to talk to or help them. Why not resolve to find someone to be friends with? Remember our disabled vets, too.
When you decide to do something, it’s like an agreement which should be followed through to the end. It’s like taking an oath, something you will stick with, even in difficult times.
Any goal needs to be clearly defined, take it in steps. We start with that then figure out how we’ll work it out, step by step, like climbing a ladder, to see it through to completion. Even if you can’t walk, you know it’s done by taking one step at a time, right? This is how we begin, with the first step in creating our resolution.
Say, you want to buy something that costs more than what you can afford. You have to save a little each month, right? If you can spare a few dollars, set that aside in a special place, till you have enough. It may be a little difficult, but if you really want something, it’ll be worth it when you bring your new item home. I’ve bought things that took a year or two to pay off the debt for, but it felt very satisfying when I did.
Other goals could include breaking bad habits. Remember to replace it with a good one, to fill the void. Sometimes it takes awhile to succeed in this, but with a little encouragement and guidance, it’s possible to beat any bad habit. Often it helps to find someone else who has the same problem, and you can work together on it, which makes it easier and more enjoyable to work on.
How about some fun resolutions, like learning a new skill, discovering your family history, finding an old friend, mending bad feelings between you and someone you had trouble with; go out more, be more understanding, loosen up, smile, and laugh more.
I wish everyone a very happy, safe, healthy, and wonderful New Year, that brings goodness to every day of your lives.
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