By Michael Jordan, MHA, CRA, RT(R)
February 2012–New Year’s Day has now come and gone. The confetti has fallen, and the celebrations have all subsided. Resolutions have been made. Some have been forgotten or abandoned for the comforts of life as usual. Other resolutions remain for a few more weeks, as evident by the last few people working out at the gym until they fade back to less healthy patterns. All this hoopla around resolutions got me to thinking about how many times I have set a New Year’s resolution. The answer is never. I can not remember one year that I had set a real resolution for myself. I wondered if it was an age thing or was it just me? In my previous articles, I have given some helpful advice and calls to action for my fellow millennial age group, but this article is different. This is one of the times that other age groups may be able to gain insight from the millennial age group.
To figure out if I was average in my peer group, I sought out what others had made in terms of resolutions for the year. What I found really surprised me. The people that I asked did respond along the lines of their generation. I want to point out that this was not a scientific study! It represents only those that I talked to and is in no way a representation of all age groups, locations in the US, or socioeconomic class. When I inquired what resolutions that those in the millennial age group had made, I found that I was in the majority with very few making resolutions. I had to wonder: what does that mean?
In digging further with those I spoke to I found that most did not place weight on a New Year’s resolution because of the frequency of failure. This may also be why so many in the millennial age group live with a significant other instead of getting married beforehand, or ever. Instead of the focus on a New Year’s resolution, the people who I talked with chose to focus on what is most important to them at that time. This is interesting because for many years now this is what the millennial group has been bashed for doing: focusing on what is most important to them now. There is no definitive start date or end date, just a focus. They do not wait, procrastinate, delay, or drag their feet in focusing on what is important.
So what can other age groups gain from this observation? Don’t wait until the time is right to do the right thing. Do it now. Focus on what is important now. Move forward, make progress, and take the next step without delay. If we wait on the perfect time or date, we are wasting valuable time that could move us forward. If we set a resolution, it will likely fade in the coming weeks, but if we focus on what is important we can move mountains. On a side note, if you get those of your staff and team members who are in the millennial age group to see the task that needs to be accomplished as important, they will likely take it on fully and push through with you to success.
Did you make a New Year’s resolution? Did you keep it? Let us know in the comments below. (You don’t need to disclose your age!)
Michael Jordan, MHA, CRA, RT(R) is the imaging manager, radiology, at Carolinas Medical Center-Union in Monroe, NC. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.