Did you know that 80% of New Years Resolutions fail by the second week of February? That
That’s not very good odds — only eight people out of 100.
So why do we continue to make these January 1st pledges, year after year, if the chances are slim we will keep them?
I know why I do. A new year is full of hope and promise, and I’m eager to make this year better than the last. So, I set goals, make plans and create my New Years Resolutions.
And then day to day life gets in the way. My initial excitement fades. Old habits are hard to break, and I slip back into past routines. I forget about my goals and the reason I created the resolutions and so, they fail.
Sound familiar? Can you relate?
A couple of years ago
Here is the way I changed my resolution making and goal planning this year.
With a fresh, new notebook and pen in hand, I wrote down what I want to accomplish this year. I thought and prayed about what areas of my life were going well and what areas I needed to improve or change. I wrote down what I want to achieve this year in each of these areas:
I ended up with a very long list. I knew if I tried to tackle everything listed at once I would become overwhelmed.
I also knew that in the past I had made difficult resolutions like “by the end of the year, I will lose 30 pounds” when I should have broken the goal down into smaller achievable goals.
So instead, this year, I chose two things to start the year. Two simple resolutions that I knew, with a little effort, I could keep.
The first is to read the Bible this year. I’ve tried reading the Bible in a year before, starting from beginning to end but have never been able to do it. This year I’m trying a new approach. I am using the Bible in One Year app. It’s a free app you can download on your phone or IPAD. Each day, you read a section from Psalms or Proverbs, a selection from the Old Testament and one from the New Testament. There is also a commentary on what you are reading that day. I am learning so much through this Bible study and am enjoying the time I spend reading my Bible.
My second New Year’s Resolution is to write every day in my journal. I chose this in hopes of becoming more consistent in my writing, and it is helping.
So far, I am keeping my New Year’s Resolutions and it’s motivating me to work on other goals I have.
Every few days, I look in my notebook at my list of all I want to accomplish this year. I’m reminded of the dreams I made at the beginning of this year, and it renews my excitement to achieve them.
I also jot down notes on ways I can accomplish these goals; a new recipe I can try so I will eat healthier, a better way to schedule my day, anything that comes to mind. When something works or I complete a goal, I write that down too.
By keeping notes in my notebook, I can see when I have accomplished something and am ready to tackle another small project that will lead me to
It also shows me when I am getting off course; spending time on things that don’t lead me to where I want my life to be. Reviewing my goals book helps me to realign my priorities and continue on the right path for me.
The best news is that you don’t have to wait for a new year to begin your notebook. You can create your goals and resolutions at any time. Why not give it a try today?