Resolving to Take Control of 2020

I would like to ask you a question, and I want you to be honest with yourself. Did you achieve everything that you wanted to in 2019? If you achieved all that you set out to achieve in 2019, congratulations! However, if you are like most people, 2019 did not meet your expectations. Don’t worry about your lack of success in 2019, because we are about to help you understand how to increase your achievements in 2020. The second question I want to ask you is why: Why did you not achieve everything you wanted in 2019? Please, be honest with yourself and write down what kept you from achieving your goals.

A lot of people will say that the economy, their kids, their boss, or other things kept them from achieving this year. While these external issues can impact your success, I believe that it is the internal issues that have the largest affect on your achievements. Before we move forward, please take a pen and mark a line through all the limiting factors that were beyond your control. Now, the remaining limiting factors that you are left with should be issues that you have control of and will impact your future.

Just remember, you can do anything you set your mind to, but it takes action, perseverance, and facing your fears.

 ̴ Gillian Anderson

            Your thoughts and your actions have the biggest effect on your success. If you tell yourself that you are defeated, then you are set up for failure. I have known a lot of people who believe that others are holding them back. They cannot be successful because of the action of others; they have an external locus of control. According to Great School Partnerships (2013), people with an external locus of control believe that their success or failure is determine by factors that are beyond their control. They blame circumstance and people for their failures. This means that they do not have to face the fact that they contribute to their own circumstances. People with an internal locus of control believe that their success or failure is based on their actions (Great School Partnerships, 2013).

 I would like to challenge you to change your prospective and adapt an internal locus of control. If you see yourself as responsible for your success, then if you do not like your level of success in 2019, you can make the changes needed to be more successful in 2020.

In January of 2019, I finished my comprehensive exams for my doctorate degree. That meant that all I needed to do to get my degree was write my treatise. At that time, I only had 37 page which was well short of the 60 pages needed to propose the research study. I decided at that time that nothing was going to stand in my way. Prior to this time, I had not written any papers longer than 22 pages. So, I started working on the treatise night and day and I had 60 pages by mid-February. After I successfully proposed my research project and received approval to proceed, I needed an additional 60 pages to meet the minimal requirement of 120 total pages. By July 2019, I had completed my research study and had a total of 226 pages. I was able to defend my treatise on August 1, 2019. I completed the treatise process and become a doctor because I understood that my success was up to me.

In the doctoral program, we had mentors and committee members that were there to help, but they will not do the work for you. I had to overcome school requirements, work requirements and family responsibilities, but I did not let these situations determine my success. I set periodic goals and reached them because I understood that I was responsible for my success. I am a doctor today because I did not let my circumstances dictate my success. I have an internal locus of control and worked on what I could have an impact on. I also tried to influence areas that were not under my direct control.

What areas of your life do you need to accept responsibility for their outcome? What areas have you resigned your success or lack thereof to fate or luck? I want to challenge you today to take control of the areas of your life that you want to be successful in 2020. If you take control of all the areas of your life, you will have more control of your success in the future.

May 2020 be the best year of your life,

Dr. Brenton White


Great school partnerships. (2013). Locus of control. Retrieved from

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