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Good intentions?

March 1, 2010

Good intentions

Interestingly a small number of home purchasers that I have spoken to did not complete the program or did not even start it: it sits in the drawer. There were reasons for purchasing the program , it was not just a matter of impulse! The intention to complete the program, is still there: there remain good reasons for their purchase.

But good intentions have become overwhelmed by the context in which they find themselves: house renovation or sale, gardens to tend,  elderly parents to care for, computer problems, the weather, caught up in other things (one person was getting married!), attending new courses, plus the everyday requirements of shopping , bill-paying, washing, cleaning, keeping up with hobbies and friends and sometimes ill health or falls, etc.

Resolution: spread out over time

A New Year resolution is intended to correct a bad habit, like no longer eating a favourite food or deciding to be on time for appointments. Habits are entrenched and stubborn and most resolutions end in failure. Most people look on such failure as a character issue, such as weakness or lack of “willpower”.

But you can blame it on your brain to some extent. Taking on or carelessly drifting into too many things over-taxes your “mental muscle” the brain, and either stress, failure or only half-baked outcomes are achieved all round. Like your working memory your over-taxed brain will go into overload and will fail you. The latest neuroscience research suggests that spreading resolutions or good intentions out over time is the best approach. This will reduce the load on your frontal lobes, but will involve them in conscious planning and decision-making.

So plan a space and attempt to keep it for your good intentions!

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