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Some Thoughts On New Year’s Resolutions

It’s that time again. Time to say goodbye to a year of ups and downs and ring in a new year filled with hope and promise and really good intentions. It’s an exciting time, but so often our hopes for the New Year crash and burn when we realize that we are still the same people doing pretty much the same things.

But it doesn’t have to be that way if we chill out a bit and have a real talk with ourselves as to how we want the next year to go.

I’ve gone back and forth with setting New Year’s resolutions. At times it’s been fun. At other times it’s been ridiculous and defeating.

This year, I’ve decided that setting resolutions at the New Year is pretty ok. As long as they are simple, enjoyable, and you can count them on one hand.

Let me give you an example. My personal New Year’s resolutions for 2016 are as follows:

1. Be outside more. 2. Sit less. 3. Create more than consume. 4. Eat well.

When I look at that list, I get excited and my wheels get turning of all those four goals encompass. Those light me up way more than lose weight, exercise, watch less tv, don’t eat junk food, blah blah blah.

They lay out a lifestyle and way of being that will happen naturally if I incorporate those four things.

If you aren’t into lists, another idea is to focus on a theme for the year instead of actual things. It could be “The Year of Travel,” or “The Year of Self Care,” or “The Year of Delicious, Healthy Food.”

I don’t know. But you get the idea. And you can revolve your life decisions around that theme throughout the year. I’ve done that in the past, and it’s been really fun.

The yearly theme idea is also great for families or with your partner, friends, etc. Even though you all may have different things going on in life, you can come together on a theme to focus on to build your relationship.

The Mr. and I spent some time this week honing in on ours, and it’s helped me be more excited and focused on our life together this coming year.

There are some interesting and sad statistics out there about New Year’s resolutions. One study states that 45% of Americans make New Year’s resolutions and only 8% feel like they maintain them the whole year. Wah waaaahhh.

This is why we need to keep it simple, enjoyable, and have a short list or theme. We start the year off on a good note, only to set ourselves up to fail. That’s crazy talk! And what a horrible tone to set for the year.

The study mentioned above did say that people who explicitly state their resolutions were 10 times more likely to attain their goals than people that didn’t explicitly share them.

So along with your simple and delightful list or theme, share it! Post it on social media. Put notes up around the house. Set reminders in your phone once a week. Get people in your life involved. It will turn the good intentions floating around in your head into concrete, real things.

In conclusion, New Year’s resolutions can be used for good, but also for evil, self-defeating purposes. Take some time to really think about the tone you want to set for 2016 and keep it in the forefront of your mind. Have fun with your simple themes and ideas and evolve with them throughout the year.


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