I digress from using the term resolutions because I think this leaves a bad taste on peoples’ tongues. Rather than thoughtfully listening to each others ideas and letting them inspire our own plan, I tend to find that when someone speaks about “New Year Resolutions,” the crowd simultaneously devour invisible sour lemons, shake their head, build a bullet-proof wall, and scream lalala until the topic is changed.
I understand the statistic is extremely low – supposedly only 8% of Americans actually have the will power to stick with their commitments, leaving the other 92% to feel like failures a quarter through the new year. In that degree, I get it…why even bother making new year goals?
But my friends, goals are the only thing that keep us prospering. They serve as motivators, teachers, and confidence-builders; they give us purpose, drive, and inspiration. Without goals, without that desire and commitment, what are we doing? What are we achieving? Sure, every day is a new opportunity to make goals and build better lives for ourselves, but I don’t think there’s a greater calling for us quite like the fresh start, the clean slate, of a new year.
Don’t just THINK it out, WRITE it out.
We all have an indomitable spirit. I know you make goals for yourself, small and big, but one of the most beneficial things you can do to actually stick with your goal(s) is to write them down. And I don’t mean write it on a piece of paper and forget about it tomorrow. I mean, you write it somewhere you’re going to see it constantly. Whether that be a sticky note that you stick on your mirror, or a planner, or a calendar, or whatever, just write it somewhere that you will see it on a daily basis.
Instead of being “REALISTIC,” try SPECIFIC
As it goes, “I want to lose weight” is a new year norm. But instead of stating the obvious, what if you try being a little more specific on how you’re going to achieve that goal? Smaller steps ensures that you focus on the task at hand with more intensity, which will build you up to meet the the top.
But if I must be honest, why don’t we step away from that new year norm of losing weight? Why don’t we start making goals based around bettering ourselves from the inside out? Here are a few ideas that don’t necessarily relate to losing weight, but they can better your health, they’re definitely obtainable, and they’re smaller ideas to project you in the direction of reaching something bigger.
- I will drink 3 liters of water daily, and stop snacking in between meals.
- I will read for an hour each night before bed instead of scrolling through Facebook.
- I will write every day.
- I will trade my morning coffee creamer for almond milk.
- I will start packing my own lunches for work instead of ordering take-out.
- I will treat myself every other week to a shopping trip, salon-day, or attend other planned events instead of “treating myself” with food.
- I will start using a planner more diligently.
- I will prioritize nurturing relationships by planning a friends-night out more often.
- I will pay someone at home, at work, and out in public a compliment every day.
I mean there are myriad of things that you can do to accomplish a higher objective. You just have to give it a little more thought and creativity (*cough cough* and write it down!).
Don’t focus on it being a YEAR’S goal, let’s break the focus into MONTHLY targets
Aforementioned, it takes smaller pictures to build a bigger picture, right? So as your writing down specific goals, try to see yourself accomplishing them within a given time frame…let’s say, 30 days? You can do anything for 30 days.
Although research claims that it takes 66 days to make something a habit, if you can bust it out for 30 days then you can use that as your foundation; you can use it as your momentum to keep going. Or you can stop. That’s right, you can decide if it’s for you or not. Whether you confidently say “this is not my goal anymore,” or “I just don’t like this,” there is no guilt in that because you can consciously and responsibly make that decision. You’re an adult – you decide what you want to keep up with or drop, but at least you gave it a try!
My 7 For 2017.
With all that being said, I’ll give you my 7
resolutions goals for 2017. I sure do hope they spark some interest and push you to create your own. And I hope by the end of the year you will be so prideful having succeeded at your endeavors, that you will carry even more motivation to make bigger plans for 2018!
(Too soon? Sorry … 😛 )
1. Limit social media usage.
This year I have learned just how detrimental social media can be to our personal growth, mental health, and social lives when it’s not used responsibly. It’s easily addictive, releasing high amounts of dopamine when we’re sent notifications on our likes and comments, it serves as a huge distraction when we should be studying or working on projects (*cough cough* me!), and can lead to higher rates of depression by increasing the feeling of loneliness and isolation, or
I value social media for it’s ability to keep people connected, but I don’t value my irresponsible use of it, which is why I feel it’s time that I make a change. For the next 30 days I have deleted Instagram, Snapchat, and Facebook off my phone. My hopes during the absence of those applications is that I will find more productive ways to utilize my free-time. Then if I decide I still want one of them on my phone, I will redownload it and practice better management of it. I’ll update you more on this as January goes by. 🙂
2. Say yes – everything deserves a chance.
I’m bringing back this goal from last year. I want to keep practicing spontaneity and taking risks. We don’t learn when “we’re ready,” we learn by figuring it out along the way. I want to continue improving my ability to step out of my comfort zone and take on new projects, ready or not.
3. Make paleo a lifestyle.
Having completed the Whole 30, I’ve learned about myself and the certain affects food has on my emotional and physical well-being. I use the Whole 30 as my “reset” every time I fall off the bandwagon, so why not start living Whole 30? It’s mostly based off of a paleo diet plus a few rules. I enjoy the process and how I feel when I’m following it so why not, right?
My plan is to keep it 80/20 Paleo: Live paleo for 80% of the time, and indulge a little bit the other 20%. Then, when I’m not feeling my optimal self, I’ll apply the Whole 30 rules to get back on track!
4. Mend stress-eating relationship with food.
This one is a bit funny for me because while I was writing down my goals, I was torn between this and Resurrect my abs!. As much as I want to see my abs, I know it will be more beneficial for me in the long run to mend my emotional response toward food when I’m feeling lonely or stressed first. So the true goal for me here is to find better techniques for stress-management, but once I master this, then I’m sure having abs will come like a no-brainer. 😉
Think smart, my friends. And be patient with yourself when you’re deciding what you truly want to achieve this new year!
5. No shortcuts: Do what’s right, not what is easy.
I am very fortunate and blessed to start my year with two very great opportunities. Not only will I begin my internship with Fit Body Boot Camp, but I will also be working as an Resident Assistant for my fellow Freshmen. I’m extremely excited, but I’m also very nervous about balancing all of this with school and [somewhat of] a social life.
My drive to do the best I can and be the best I can means that I have no intentions to take shortcuts. I already know it’s not going to be easy, but that doesn’t mean I won’t give my all, no matter what. The way I see it, taking shortcuts – taking the easy way out – is for weaklings. In a year of self-improvement and growth, we only got time to get stronger…AKA we ain’t got time for weaklings.
6. Work on my blog and start devising plans for an online business.
Mmm, that’s all I’ll tell you about that… 😉
7. Prioritize and nurture the relationships that matter.
Since I’ll be giving up social media for a while I want to start dedicating my extra time toward my friends at home, and building better relationships with friends at school. Since moving away from home toward the end of 2016, I’ve learned who my true friends are and can better decipher where I apply my efforts and time. When I return home, I can say the same for those friends that I’ve met at school.
Inevitably, through new classes, my internship, and being an RA, I’ll be meeting plenty of new people, but I want to make a greater effort this time to keep those connections close and build stronger friendships with people that make me happy, lift me up, and encourage and support me.
These are my goals for 2017, along with a few others that I’ve kept in mind because they’re still too vague at the moment, but that’s it!
Day 1 is already written in the books, and I’m ready to conquer the other 364. What are your goals for 2017? I’d love to know!
Wishing you only the absolute best in your New Year…health, wealth, and happiness! You know…all the good stuff. 🙂