New Year’s Resolutions

New Year resolutions word abstract in vintage letterpress wood type blocks with a pine cone
New Year resolutions type blocks provided by StockPhotoSecrets.com

It’s officially two weeks into the new year and if you’re anything like me, you’ve either completely forgotten to make a resolution yet, or completely broken said resolution.

Last year I did something a little different since I started the year off heartbroken and dying of Mono which seemed to work out surprisingly well.

I decided to make a list of goals as my resolutions–mixing smaller and larger goals so that way I sort of reward myself with that fancy little check mark saying I’ve done it. And then at the end of the year, I reflect on what I’ve accomplished. If I have two thirds of my goals done I think “damn I did it,” instead of punishing myself. I think the law of averages will help when bad spells take over–when you don’t have enough spoons or if life just gets in the way. Or in my case, you get dumped by the guy who gave you Mono (I feel like a bad young adult novel heroine).

I find that this technique ends up making me feel less guilty. As long as I progress and get little things done, then I’m golden. I’m better than I was before and that’s the point of a resolution–to get better, to be better.

I also write my to-do lists this way because I know that sometimes you’re not going to get everything done, but if you get a few things crossed off, doesn’t that feel great?

Plus, another tip I have is using the time before the Westernize New Year and the Chinese New Year to establish your goals. If you fall off the band wagon now, psh…that’s fine. You can finesse your goals between now and the Chinese New Year and it’s all good. It gives you time after the busy holiday to find out what you really want to change or make better–plus it’s always nice to be aware of other holidays and cultures. I send Happy Chinese New Year messages to my friend in Malaysia every year and she’s so appreciative of it. It’s wonderful.

Concrete Goals

Now, let’s break down our resolutions into their different parts. I start off with concrete goals. Ones that are defined. This year my concrete goals are as follows:

  • Make a new post every Monday this year
  • Promote my blog on social media when I post
  • Participate in 85K in 90 Days
  • Participate in Camp NaNo
  • Participate in NaNoWriMo
  • Find a new job
  • Start taking photographs again
  • Pay off my credit card bills
  • Double my savings

These kind of goals have a finish line. Making a post every Monday can be marked off with a check mark. Participating in events are timely affairs with due dates. And when it come to money goals, having numbers (be it zero or a thousand) you can definitely see when you reach those.

Vague Goals

I do have more vague goals that I never give up on. They are just little things that I want to see progress in by the end of the year. They are also the ones people tend to do as their main goals and then fall apart. Vague goals without concrete ways to track them will be murder on your self-confidence. You’ll never full attain them so there never is a simple check mark. They are growth goals…unless you full break them down.

Here are my vague goals:

  • Get more organized
  • Eat healthier
  • Eat out less
  • Save more money
  • Expand my portfolio

These aren’t inherently bad, but if you want them as your main goal I’d define them.

Defining Goals

You can take any vague, open ended goal and make it a concrete one. Like eating out less. What does that mean? Maybe you’ll say meal prep for the week or give yourself a limit like eat out no more than twice a month. Those are things you can make more concrete.

I already made “save more money” more concrete by saying “double my savings” but I could also include no spend days or no credit card months! Vague goals can only be your main goals if you make them, well, less vague. It’s easier to keep yourself accountable, but also shows how much you’ve done even if you don’t fully make your goal.

And if you ever need help reaching your goals, don’t be afraid to ask! It’s hard going it alone. I know I’ll definitely need your help with making posts (if you have any ideas I’d love to hear them).

Plus, I’d love to see you participate in any of the writing events listed above.

2019 fireworks provided by NordWood Themes on Unsplash.com

Here’s to a new year, new resolutions, and not beating yourself up too much.

Let me know any resolutions you’re going to do this year, and how you plan on achieving them in the comments below.

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