Every new year millions of people make resolutions to get organized, simplify, lose weight, exercise more, spend less time on their phones, save money, etc.
The reality is only about 8% of people succeed in keeping their resolutions. Why do so many people, who have great intentions fail?
The problem is most people have a laundry list of things they want to change or improve each year and the goals aren’t very specific.
For example, one year I decided I wanted to simplify my life. That’s a great goal because who really wants a more complicated life?
But how could I actually simplify things?
What I should have said was:
“This year I’m going to wait 24 hours before I say “yes” to any new commitments so I can evaluate whether or not it is worth saying yes to.”
In order to keep your resolutions, you need can’t just say you want to get organized or lose weight. You need a plan.
How to Keep Your Resolutions
It is easy to say, “I want to get in shape” but it is actually hard to get in shape.
A few years ago I decided that I would always take the stairs if possible. Taking the stairs is something specific I could do to move towards a healthier lifestyle.
It was also achievable. I’m in good health, so going up and down stairs was something I was capable of doing.
Sometimes I would get winded, but I resolved to get in better shape so that going up a few flights of stairs was no problem.
Today I can easily carry luggage up and down the stairs at the airport without breaking a sweat. The small change of taking the stairs, triggered other changes in my life. I didn’t want to get sweaty and gross walking up the stairs so I focused more on my physical fitness.
Make them achievable
When thinking about setting resolutions, try to come up with specific and achievable goals.
Set a goal of organizing one specific space a week (or a day).
Everyone is capable of organizing spaces one at a time by making a few small changes to your daily or weekly routine.
If you aren’t naturally organized check out a book at the library for motivation or purchase a daily/ weekly checklist. Ask one of your super organized friends to come over and help you get started.
Make sure the goals you set are ones you have the ability to reach.
When I started to get fit, I did not like going to the gym. I hated it. I decided to hire a trainer to keep me accountable.
Not everyone can afford a trainer (I needed one due to a previous back surgery) but everyone needs someone to hold them accountable.
Share your goals with a friend or family member so they can check up on you and maybe even work towards those goals with you.
I’ve found that with every big accomplishment in my life, there has been someone that was constantly checking up on me making sure I stayed on track.
Make it enjoyable
If you absolutely hate what you are doing, chances are you are going to try and avoid doing it at all costs.
If you hate to cook, you probably are not going to want to menu plan and make dinner seven nights a week.
I like to build in little rewards to motivate me to do things I don’t love to do. So if I hated to cook I would probably reward myself with two nights off a week (either go out or have the kids make sandwiches for themselves) if I cooked the other five nights.
Or I would find out how much money I saved by cooking at home and use the extra funds to do something fun like take a weekend vacation or buy something fun for the house.
A few years ago I stopped making resolutions. I decided instead to evaluate my schedule/ life every month and decide what I needed to focus on. For example this month I decided to focus on making dinner every night.
This is actually quite challenging since my girls have practice every night of the week from 5:30-7:30pm. However I realized that because of these practices my family was eating way to many frozen pizzas and junk food.
I looked at my schedule and realized there were some nights we could eat dinner at 4:30 and other days the child with practice could either take dinner with them to practice or eat when they got home. So far I’ve made dinner every single night of 2019 and my kids aren’t complaining. 🙂
These dinners aren’t fancy (chicken, tacos, spaghetti) but I’m getting into a routine and finding out what works for our schedule.
I anticipate by the end of the month I’ll have figured out how to make it work with our crazy practice schedule. I might not make dinner every single night of 2019 (and I don’t want to, lol) but I will have created a system and routine that allows me to make dinner more often than not.
Next month I’ll be in a routine of making dinner more frequently and be able to focus on the next project.
Here are a few of my favorite things this month.
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