It’s that time of year again, isn’t it? The time we set our resolutions and make the decision to have a fresh start with the new year!
I have always been that person that sets too many goals and sets the bar too high each year. And what happens? I fail. Every time. So let’s not shoot for an overhaul lifestyle change effective January 1st, 2018. Why? Well most of us will be hungover. But if you are in the small percentage of those who didn’t stay up late to celebrate the new year, I’ll give you another reason. You WILL burn yourself out. We are all busy enough and whether we realize it or not we have all developed habits and routines. You are not going to change your habits overnight, especially if you are trying to make too many changes. If you only have one resolution, great! Maybe you can succeed. But if you are like me (always dreaming big and making new goals) you will have far too many changes to make to take them all on at once. What I have learned in the past is that when I fail, I get discouraged. I lose motivation and I give up on the idea of that healthy new habit or routine I was hoping for. So let’s instead start small and take is slow. Let’s develop new habits and kick old habits one month at a time. By the end of the year you will (hopefully) have a lifestyle change that will be second nature.
How are we going to do this? We will start with a list! I chose to pick 12 habits that I would like to form or kick in the new year and I listed them out. Then I numbered them 1-12 from most desired to least desired. Not that I don’t want to do them ALL but there are some that I feel are more necessary sooner than later. The numbers then correspond with the months of the year. 1=January 2=February, and so on. And it’s not to say that you can’t start your other resolutions throughout the year, but each month your main focus will be on that months resolution and continuing the previous months resolutions.
Here is my list in order from 1-12. Deciding what order to do them in is 100% up to you! I have a honeymoon in February, so I decided that January would be the month I take on a workout plan. Maybe you want to start smaller for January, and that’s okay! It will build your confidence and ease you into the routine.
- Work out 3 times per week – MINIMUM
- Drink 80 ounces of water each day
- Be in bed by 8pm every night
- Eat breakfast every day
- Morning stretch routine
- Wake up at 4:30AM every day
- Meatless Mondays
- Self care 1 time per week
- Stop eating out for lunch – pack a lunch every day
- Exchange afternoon coffee for tea
- Put the phone down! Two times per month have a “no phone” day
- Slow down when eating
Let me explain a few of these – because they might seem somewhat crazy. #3 – Be in bed by 8pm. I don’t mean that I go to sleep that early BUT that is the time of night that I want to put down all electronics and start to wind down. I have spent so many nights working on a project up until I fall asleep or been on my phone laying in bed. Instead, I want to read a book until I fall asleep. This will be especially difficult in the summer when it’s light out until 9pm, so I might have to add in that I am allowed to read on the patio until 9pm 😉
#4 – Eat breakfast. I rarely eat breakfast, and when I do, I really feel energized! When I don’t, there are days that my stomach will hurt until I do. I need to focus on setting aside time to eat breakfast every day.
#8 – Self care – I tend to treat myself on occasion as it is. For example, I get a massage every month. But many times, three weeks will go by where I have not done anything for myself. Manicures, pedicures, bubble bath, massage, facial, etc. These are all examples of things you can do yourself at home or can have done at a salon to treat yourself. I splurged a couple years ago and bought a CND shellac kit so that I could do my own nails. I love it and it saves me a lot of money!
I think the rest are pretty self explanatory, but if you want clarification on anything, shoot me a message.
Now that you have seen my examples, set your own goals! If you don’t have 12, that’s fine! You’ll just complete the cycle earlier in the year. If you have more than 12, either cut some of them out OR you can double up the smaller goals.
Find a place to keep your goals – a place where you feel relaxed and inspired. For me, it’s my craft room. I try to keep it free of clutter and I keep a chaise lounge chair in there for a relaxation element. This is where I write down and decide on all of my goals. I keep them posted so that I can see them and don’t forget about them.
Did you think we were done?
You were wrong.
NOW, let’s talk about financial goals. Even though this is something that you should be revisiting every month, therefore forming a routine – It still deserves its own category. Financial goals will be widespread. Everyone is in a different situation, has different debts and ideas on how to spend their money. So I just want to give you a general idea of what financial goals would be good for you.
If you are someone who sets a monthly budget and reconciles each month, AWESOME! If you don’t currently put together a budget plan each month, I vote you start there. Budgeting takes a lot of time and effort and upkeep. At least if you do it the way I do. That will be a post on its own someday. But my methods aren’t necessarily for everyone. There are a lot of templates out there to help you develop a budget and it will amaze you when you realize where all of your money is actually going each month. It will certainly help you save money and take control of your financial well being.
If you already budget, let’s set some goals for 2018!
For example, it could be to pay off some debt, boost up savings, save for a specific item or trip, put more into retirement, and so on.
My 2018 financial goals are:
- Put $3,000 in savings – MINIMUM
- Set aside $5,000 for my future barn
Again, this is something I will revisit each month. I KNOW that to save $3,000 for the year I need at least $250.00 budgeted for savings each month. However, I also know that there are months that money will be tighter and I won’t be able to set aside that much. So what I will do is save as much as I can each month in anticipation for the months that I won’t be able to tuck as much away.
The last step. At least for me. You don’t have to make your goal list this lengthy. But like I said, I dream big. And I like lists.
My final category consists of bucket list items or any additional goals I have for the year. It might be a one time type of thing that doesn’t require a lifestyle change or habit forming routine. Or it might be something that I hope to accomplish. My list is:
- Learn a new language!
- Read one book per month
- Goal weight – 145
- Date night 1 time per month – do something new each time!
- Make 2 blog posts per month
- Add another critter to our farm
- Renovate 1 room in the house
- Start making furniture
- BE PRESENT!
I made a list of ALL my categories and goals – This will be displayed in my room
I will make a monthly post about my progress! I am counting on this blog to hold me accountable. I’d love to read your comments about your resolutions and how they are going throughout the year!
I hope that 2018 treats you all well.