Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbour. Catch the trade winds in sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.

–Mark Twain

My One-Word Resolution: DO.

This year, inspired by my wife, I have decided that my resolution will be a single word: DO.

I have run the gamut of ridiculous New Year’s Resolutions. I cannot count the number of times that I have sworn to lose weight on January 1st and found myself wading knee-deep into a pool of nacho cheese a few weeks later. When I didn’t have a resolution, I lost 110 pounds over the course of two years and am in the best shape of my life.

The problem with most people’s resolutions isn’t with the people, it’s with the resolution. There’s nothing wrong with lofty goals, but you need to make sure you set realistic goals. I like to set resolutions like I do goals at work – if my boss can conclusively see that I have met that goal at the end of the year, then the goal is specific and measurable.

Of course, my resolution for this year sounds a little more vague and far less measurable, but I’m doing it nonetheless. My resolution is simple: DO.

This may mean something different for everyone, but for me, it means action trumps fear and doubt. Anytime I ask my self What if … ? this year, my response will be DO ITWhat if I fail? DO it anyway. What if nobody likes what I write? DO it anyway. Should I take this chance? DO it.

I can look back on the opportunities that I have passed on with much regret. I can look back and see all of the times where fear paralyzed me and I was too afraid to take a step, too afraid to finish a book or a story or take a risk.

This year, that ends. This year, I will do everything I set out to do and I will not allow fear of failure, fear of success, and self-doubt to prevent me from doing the things that I know I should be doing.

  • Kelly

    There is a three word philosophy that fits here:
    Be. Do. Have.
    Be who you need to be to do what you need to do to have the life that you want.
    It’s been a guiding philosophy for a half-dozen Yeats no, and like you, my life has changed radically.
    Its ok to Be afraid. Do it anyway.