New Year’s Resolutions: Whether you swoon over the idea of a fresh start, or you believe the “new you, new year” mantra to be a bit too cliche, it’s hard not to enter the coming year without some sort of reflection as to how the last one ended.
…Did you make any significant achievements?
…Did you visualize better for yourself?
…Did you encounter any unexpected setbacks?
…Would you have done anything differently had you the chance?
It’s usually now, during the quiet (and somewhat awkward) time between Christmas and New Year’s that life affords me a moment or two for reflection. You know- once all the family has left, the presents have been put away, and the chaos that comes from the holiday planning & hosting settles down (at least for a minute)….
I know I say it every year, but this year, in particular, seems to have flown by. The older I get, the more apparent it becomes: time really does move faster than you think.
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- The Daily Gratitude Practice that Changed My Life
- 6 Steps to Creating the Perfect Night Routine for More Productive Mornings
- 21 Books that Radically Changed My Life
- The BEST Hack to Creating More Happiness in Your Life (In Under 2 Minutes!)
It’s a realization that has left me thinking of ways to be more intentional with my time and truly waste less of it. And with the New Year right around the corner, now seems as good as time as any to make good on that promise and set some goals for myself.
The Problem with New Year’s Resolutions:
While New Year’s Resolutions are often well-intentioned, the sad truth is that they usually fall out of focus mid-way through the year.
I’m sure you know what I’m talking about. We certainly have all been there before…
You set some lofty goal for yourself, determined to follow through this time around, but a few weeks in, once the excitement that came from setting that resolution begins to fade, you decide to throw in the towel, convince yourself that perhaps your goal isn’t as important as you originally believed and you vow to start again at some later date.
And the truth is- you likely forget about that goal until next year rolls around when you find yourself thinking, once again, about New Year’s Resolutions. It’s a cycle that many women get stuck in.
So what’s a more actionable way to put your best foot forward and stay true to your resolution this year?
The answer is simple- mix things up and have a clear objective month by month, rather than for the year overall.
Let me give you an example- are you trying to lose weight this coming year? Good for you! That’s definitely a change worth pursing.
BUT instead of trying to overhaul your life + habits overnight- why not use one month to explore new styles of workouts and challenge yourself to find one that you really LOVE. Perhaps it’s something completely outside of your comfort zone- aerobic pole dancing anyone?
Why not use a different month to learn new cooking skills that will compliment your new eating habits?
Maybe that means you buy a new, healthy cookbook that you will use to cook meals from at least three times each week. Or maybe that means you sign up for a local cooking class and learn how-to cook foods from a different ethnicity.
Your only limitation is your imagination, friend!
Realize that it’s not necessary to complete each “mini-resolution” by the month’s end. Allow yourself some rollover; but by plugging away at your goal bit by bit rather than tackling it head on, you’re making the entire process more manageable.
And when the process becomes easier- that’s when our new habits really take root + we become consistent with our new lifestyle.
Not to mention, by renewing your commitment each month to your original resolution, you’re maintaining focus and ensuring your success in completing whatever it is you set out to do (#winning)!
Everyone can benefit from a re-do every now and then. How does 12 do-overs sound? (too good to be true?)Sounds to me like the odds are a bit more in your favor 😉
An Inside Peak of How This Goal-Setting Strategy Works in Real Life:
Personally, I’m dedicating this year to ‘bettering myself’. And while that overarching goal is a bit vague (a red-flag in goal-setting), I’m planning to take it one step at a time and assign each month just one goal that I deem necessary if I’m to grow personally in the coming year.
To give you an example of what I’m talking about- my year will go something like this:
- Read More: Ideally I’d like to finish a book each week, but I’m going to start with baby steps on this one. My goal is to complete 15 pages each night before bed.
- This is my attempt to kick the Netflix habit once and for all! Not only will reading be more conducive to a better night’s sleep- making me more rested and productive the following day, but there’s just so much more to learn from the millions of books literally available to us all than from watching yet another re-run of my favorite drama.
- Write a Gratitude Journal: Even science is jumping on the bandwagon with this one. Practicing gratitude can have significant effects on our health and overall well-being (kinda cool, isn’t it?).
- If keeping a gratitude journal can turn me into a more upbeat and positive individual, you can bet I’m going to give it a try. I mean, really…kindness never goes out of style. What do I have to lose?
- Declutter: There is nothing more debilitating to my productivity than waking up to a messy house. And there is nothing that puts me in a bad mood faster than coming home to a disorganized wreck after a long day at work.
- If I want my inner-self to exude peace and calm then you better believe that my surroundings are going to match! De-cluttering isn’t just about cleanliness either. For me, it’s about living with intention- only keeping what I absolutely need and getting rid of anything that I can live without.
etc… I won’t bore you with the entire year. You get the point.
In year’s past, it’s likely I would have set a similar goal for myself; however I would have been convinced that in order to achieve it, I’d have to make all those challenges at once… read, write, clean …on top of all my regular responsibilities…
Seriously- who has the time or patience to overhaul their life at once?
Don’t get me wrong, I love big changes, but sometimes it’s more effective to take many small steps rather than one giant leap.
Need some help planning your own goals for the coming year? Want to reflect on how last year played out? I got you covered, friend. Enter your email below to receive my (free) planning and reflection worksheets for the coming year!
Here to support YOU! XO- Britney (ms.fit.farmer)