I totally cringed just writing that. I mean, NY resolutions are such a cliched thing to do, and I was reading today that only 8% of us actually ever keep them. 8%! Why do we even bother?
There is something undeniably electrifying about the blank canvas that is the new year. The pregnant possibilities that this may be the year that you finally learn conversational French, go base jumping or meet the love of your life. What’s not to love?
I have been successful at keeping some resolutions in the past, and absolutely woeful at others. The resolutions that stuck had things in common, so here are my tips on how I keep them.
- I wrote them down and put them somewhere I could see them every day. Having your goals right in your face keeps them fresh in your mind, and acts like an ever-present nag. Guilt your way to keeping your resolutions if you must.
- I made them specific. You all know this stuff. It’s better to have a goal of ‘loosing 10 kilos’ than ‘I want to lose weight’.
- I started off small. Don’t overdo it. Your brain can only handle one or two new things at a time so there’s little point trying to change all of your life at once. It’s just how we’re wired. Be kind. Give yourself grace.
- I turned them into habits. The year I decided I wanted to be able to run 5k I got my butt out of bed early on set days of the week, as I knew that I come up with all sorts of excuses if I leave exercising until later in the day. Getting up at 6am became automatic and meant my running was done and dusted before my brain could really switch on and complain too much.
- I planned for them throughout the year. You want to learn a language? How to cook ethnic food? Play an instrument? BOOK THE CLASS. Pay the money and lock it in.
- I was accountable to others. D and I usually make our resolutions together. It’s so much easier if the people you live with are on board with you. If you live alone, find a like-minded friend to join you. This really, really works. When I gave up sugar, I started blogging about it. In hindsight, this was one of the best things I could have done. Not only could I see the progress I had made right there in black and white, but I felt like I couldn’t let my readers down by eating sugar, so it kept me honest.
So in this spirit, here are my 2015 resolutions:
- Complete our Dollar Diet. Details of what a spending fast is are here.
- Complete two months of Trim Healthy Mama on-plan eating. Two months is long enough to see any benefits, and to know if it is going to be a realistic way of eating for D and I. If we like it, we’ll continue.
- Spend Monday nights writing my novels, and Tuesday and Thursday nights blogging. I’ve even written out my weekly schedule (I’m a ‘J’ in Myers Briggs, in case you can’t tell…), I found the cutest weekly planner here. How will I make the time? By not watching TV or browsing the net on those nights (I don’t watch TV much anyway). These two things are the biggest time wasters on the planet. If you reckon you don’t have time for things, I guarantee you’ll suddenly have a bunch of free time if you limit your tv/internet time.
Do you make NY resolutions? Have you ever kept them?