New Year’s Resol-revolutions

Every year I have grand plans for what’s going to be different. A fresh slate, a new day, it’s easy to buy into the idealism of a clock tick turning your life from a pumpkin to a carriage. What’s most tempting for me is the unity. I make mini-resolutions all year but New Year’s is especially powerful since everyone is in it together. As a serial resolutioner, here’s how I come up with resolutions that I can (and want to) stick with all year.

This year, I split up my life and my goals into a few categories:

  • health,
  • relationships,
  • learning,
  • minimizing,
  • organizing,
  • and community.

Working with Nick, we came up with 25 general statements that fall into these categories. (Yes, I know that 25 is a lot of things to fit into a schedule but fortunately some of them overlap and some of them are one time only items.) For example, for “relationships” we came up with:

  • make friends in new circles,
  • be better friends in our existing relationships,
  • strengthen our relationship,
  • be more romantic,
  • keep journals.

Within each of these things we set different goals for ourselves. I spend most of my free time crafting and designing, so for make friends in new circles my goal is to meet a new crafter each month and feature them on the blog.

There are two key pieces to setting a goal, making it accomplishable and setting a time frame. If you keep this framework in mind, it’s easy to look back every week or every month and make sure that you’re getting to everything that you want to do.

Some of the goals are meant to be accomplished and then revised. Under organizing, I have “create and follow a monthly budget.” The create part of that goal won’t take long to complete so I have follow up goals ready with “save an additional $50 each week” and “sell items from minimizing and add to savings.” Everything is part of the same goal of creating a financial safety net but I give myself small steps that I can take gradually instead of biting off more than I can chew.

Once I’ve come up with my goals, I sit down with my planner and add reminders throughout it to “schedule craft blog post” or “research community gardens” at the intervals I decided on in my goal planning. At the end of each week and month, I have a Post-It with all of my goals that I move to the next check point once I’ve accomplished all of the goals.

The final key is to know when to cut something that isn’t working for you without quitting everything. It’s important to remember that each of these goals are individual items and that stopping one doesn’t mean that you’ve failed. Sometimes things just don’t work out and that’s okay. You can do it!

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