New Year, Same Me

Wednesday, January 2, 2019

Happy New Year! This meme- am I right? I can't believe it is 2019. I still remember NYE in 1999 when we were all afraid of Y2K. That's how old I am! Ha! On a serious note, today's post is about resolutions- why I love them and why I don't.

If you know me, you know I am all about goals. I believe having goals is one of the most important parts of growing and evolving. One of the things I love most about January 1st, besides the fact that its a national holiday- the new year provides a baked in way to start fresh. With a new year comes new hope and a sense of a blank slate. I think it's a great opportunity to challenge yourself. I also think it's a great way to take inventory of your life and the past year. What worked? What didn't? What were your successes and failures, and what will you do differently this year?

This is my first resolution rule- I don't have resolutions, I have goals. It may seem like a minor difference. To me, the term resolutions just sounds trendy, like a fad- temporary. So many people have resolutions but not everyone has goals. Don't make resolutions. Set real goals.

My second rule, that works for me- set small goals. Having small, attainable goals has been a real game changer for me. Sure, I want to support other women/people/moms and change the world- I think that's a great goal- but how does that goal help me get through today and stay focused? How does that goal help me take intentional, consistent steps forward? Sometimes my goals are as small as- do laundry and make dinner. Read for 15 minutes a day. Be an engaged mom- put the phone down, more, and get on the floor and really play with my daughter.

That's not to say that big goals get erased. Big goals work for me too, but in a different way. So many people I know (including me, in the past) set these lofty goals- which is fine. But if you use smaller goals as a trail of breadcrumbs to help you get there, you are setting yourself up for success. For example, say you want to launch a business. I love that goal! But you can set smaller goals to help you get there. Start by networking with someone that has success in business- you can make it a goal to schedule a phone call or send them an email. Take a basic business course at a local college. Setup a LinkedIn account and add some people in your desired field/business. Whatever it is! I consider a big goal the last step of a long checklist of smaller goals. If you focus only on huge goals- you may rob yourself of the feeling of accomplishment that you can experience all the time. Achieving small goals provide a real sense of encouragement. I have yet to meet one person that doesn't feel good when they cross something off their to-do list. Even if the list is a mile long and never-ending.

Set goals based on feelings- not just numbers or metrics. I am a fairly healthy and active person and something that shifted my mindset was setting health goals based on feeling. I used to get so motivated by fitting into a dress, hitting a number on a scale. The me today- I threw all of that out the window. For me, it's not about a number on the scale or one outfit. It's not about getting Britney Spears Slave For You stomach (although, dang girl- she looked fit and beautiful). Honestly, the weight in my stomach is the last to budge and I'm not sure it ever will. Ha!

Or say you work your tail off and finally hit that number- or zip that dress- then what? I think when you tie a goal to a set number or something so finite, you are selling yourself short. My goals? I want to feel comfortable in my skin. I want to feel confident when I wear clothes I like. And most importantly, I want to feel strong. I want to pick up my 25 pound daughter and feel like my arms are strong. I want to chase her up the stairs and not get winded. And as she grows in size and gets faster and faster- I want to keep up. When I feel like skipping my workout- I remind myself how good it feels to have it done. I feel stronger not just physically but mentally, too. Sure, I have those skinny jeans in my closet. But I need goals that keep me going- before or after I fit into them.

Setting goals on feelings applies to motherhood too. It is so easy to get distracted by milestones, skills, abilities, percentiles. When my daughter was late to walk this really threw me for a loop. I stopped with all of that! Of course, in consultation with your pediatrician, it IS important for a child to meet certain statistics and metrics. But that doesn't motivate me everyday. A mom whose child walks early is not better than a mom whose child walks late. A mom whose child reads at age 4 is not better than a mom whose child reads at age 6. Being a mom whose goals are- real engagement, patience and teaching- makes me a better mom. My most important goal- more than a growth mindset or feeling strong or Whole 30 whatever- is to be a mom whose child knows she enjoys being her mom, is always willing, ready and able to teach her, and will always love her no matter what.

Thanks for sticking with me through this! To summarize, my "resolution" rules are as follows:

  1. Use the new year as a great chance to reflect on what you did well the past year and what you need to work on this year
  2. Set goals, not resolutions
  3. Set small goals and big goals- both are important
  4. Set goals based on feelings not numbers 
  5. OH and....don't forget that tomorrow is never promised to make the most of today and appreciate that you've made it another year!
So while I love New Year's and the sense of possibilities it brings, I don't like to approach it as- I'm going to lose 15 pounds and get rich! Challenge yourself, contribute to the world around you- and don't forget to give yourself credit for the things you've already accomplished because there is always something you've done right :)

Tell me....what are your goals for this year? I would love nothing more than to hear them and share ideas! <3

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