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Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Why I Don't Make New Year's Resolutions

You can find the blank printable for the word of the year (or just for a thought bubble chart in general) here, under "Getting Organized for the New Year".

I don't make New Year's resolutions for one very specific reason.  A year is too long.  I do really well for the first couple days, maybe even a few weeks, but then life pushes those ideas and thoughts to the back of my mind and I forget.  I forget that I wanted to write so much or do these projects or lose this weight.  Because life is full of other little things.

I moved on to monthly goals for awhile.  Those kind of worked, except it usually went something like this:
  • Write the monthly goals post at the beginning of the month.
  • Immediately do the easy thing (I always included one easy thing).
  • Forget about the list for 3 weeks.
  • Go to write the monthly goals post for the next month and quickly try to do the rest of the things on it.
So that didn't work too well either.  I moved to weekly goals, and I think I've finally found my sweet spot.  A week is short enough.  I can remember things for that amount of time, or they can live in my new planner, or on my marker board, a reminder to get crossed off, but not there for so long that I don't even see them anymore.
So you might wonder why someone who forgets things after a week would choose a word for the year.  For the entire year.  That's like asking for failure, right?  And perhaps it is, although I hope it isn't.  I tried this once before, and it kind of fizzled out.  

The difference is that this time I actually took the time to break it down.  

I chose the word Relationships this year.  I feel like I've let a lot of my relationships take a back burner, and I'd like to fix that.  I went with specific categories of people, and then wrote down some specific ways I could improve my relationship with each one.
  • God
  • Jesse
  • My kids, both generally as a parent, and each child specifically
  • My extended family - parents, grandma, siblings and their families
  • My friends
  • My church family
  • My kids' relationships with important people in their lives
Once I separated those categories out, I thought of specific ways to work on building and improving each of those relationships.  Things like writing to my grandma once a month, or having the kids send pictures and notes to their godparents.  Things like actually calling people (I'm an introvert who hates phone calls, so I put them off, but I do actually love talking to family and friends).  

I gave myself time frames and lists of things to do, and while putting aspects of my relationships on checklists might seem really weird to some of you, I think it will help me to make sure I don't put off the important people in my life.  

Do you pick a word for the year?  Set any resolutions or goals?  Make checklists of people to call?  Tell me about it...

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