New Year – New You?
The tradition of creating New Year’s Resolutions has always been, for me, a bitter sweet ritual. On one hand, I love the idea of reflecting on the past year and setting goals to step into the next one with intention and with purpose. On the other hand, I dislike the notion that somehow my life wasn’t good enough and that I must change everything about myself for the next year to really count.
Many a year I’ve sat down, written out lists of resolutions intended to revolutionize my life and transform me into the most idealistic version of myself. I start out strong but immediately (like, January 1st around 11am) realize that I have set myself up for failure. I didn’t wake up at 5am and bound over to the gym. And I ate a bagel for breakfast, forgetting the ban on carbohydrates. Then I walked by my desk and instead of clearing out my inbox in under an hour with a smile on my face, I pretended I didn’t see the stack of papers sitting there and busied myself with following up on phone calls and answering emails. (Yes, even Professional Organizers avoid paperwork sometimes! Can you blame us?) So much for those resolutions. While this approach did result in my starting out the new year with a new attitude, it was an attitude of defeat, not accomplishment. And that isn’t a good way to start anything. But what could I do? I did the only thing I could think of: to change the outcome, I had to change my system.
Here’s how I approach the New Year these days.
Reflect on the past year, but focus on the positive. What did I accomplish that I really LOVED, that I was PROUD of, that made me feel FULFILLED, SATISFIED, and HAPPY.
- Figure out how to transfer these successes to new areas of my life.
- Start small and build in success.
- Reward myself – constantly!
- Avoid perfection (as if I could do anything but!)
Whatever your goals are for 2013, remember that you have many strengths that have gotten you this far and I wish you all the best for a happy, healthy, and organized New Year.