What was your New Year’s Resolution this year? Did you commit to lose weight? Quit drinking? Make your bed every day? Have you already quit? Did you even start? Making resolutions feels good, and telling people about them feels even better, but when it comes to the nitty-gritty of actually keep your resolutions? Eh, it’s not as exciting as making them.
Don’t worry. All is not lost! There’s still time to make commitments you can keep for the entire year, though it may not be what you had originally envisioned.
Create a theme for your year.
And by theme, we mean one positive word. Strength, gratitude, love, kindness - select a positive word like one of these to be your focus for the year. Forget words that make you feel you’re not good enough and need to be better, like “weight loss”. You should choose something that you believe you already have, but want to develop.
Set an achievable goal for each month that will help you develop your theme word.
So let’s say your theme word is “kindness.” For January you may want to commit to buying a stranger some coffee, for February, help your elderly neighbor get some groceries. With each month, the tasks can become ever more sacrificial and meaningful, or you can mix it up. Is your theme word strength? You can commit to lifting a certain weight in March.
Keep a journal.
You don’t need remember to write in the journal every day. Just a little of note of the task you committed to, why you chose it, what happened, and how you feel about it. At the end of the year you can look back on your journal and reflect on how the year started versus how it ended, what you learned and how you’ve grown.
Some might give the advice that if you want to follow through with a certain task, you should tell someone so you can be kept accountable. But the truth is, your psyche gets a pay-off when you tell someone about what you propose to do. It’s as if you’ve already congratulated yourself for doing the thing that you plan to do. Keep this a personal commitment, and promise yourself to tell people about what you’ve learned once it’s over. You are much more likely to follow through if the pay-off is at the end.
So, what’s your theme word for this year? Tells us in the comments!