I love new years and the promise they bring: a fresh start, a new and sunny outlook.  I am an avid goal-setter, so coming up with resolutions is no difficult task for me.  What is difficult is refining my list.  Here’s my problem: it’s so easy for me to generate a super-long list of resolutions just by visualizing my “ideal self”, but I’m never going to realize that ideal if I try to improve upon every single aspect of myself at once.  I’d be better off choosing a select few goals at a time (it feels like high school when I was always struggling to shave that extra page off my essays…some things never change).

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The other no-no is making goals that are at all broad or vague, and I’m guilty of many: “eat fewer treats”, “prioritize better”, “be kinder to others”.  All admirable goals, but I accomplish way more if I choose things on which I can actually measure my progress, or even better, cross right off my to-do list.  My floss-every-day resolution circa 2011?  I’m still goin’ strong.

So, what are my priorities right now (even for the month of January alone)?  And how can I break them down to make them realistic?

  1. Be in the moment, by:
  • Putting away my phone when with friends/family, when at work, or when trying to focus on a task.
  • Catching myself when my mind wanders in conversation.
  • Engaging more in small talk.
  • Really savouring every bite and every sip.

      2.  Prioritize and be punctual, by:

  • Actually getting up when my alarm goes off.
  • Making a list of the three (more or less) most important things to get done that day, and not worrying so much about everything else.
  • Leaving home with enough time + at least 10 minutes to get where I need to be.

3.   Make more of my own meals, by:

  • Generating meal ideas, and going grocery shopping, on Sundays.
  • Preparing work lunches (and breakfasts, if necessary) the night before.

      4.   Be more fearless, by:

  • No longer googling every last symptom, in order to stop feeling sorry for myself.
  • Stop letting my knee problems hold me back from doing the things I really love – it’s not worth it.
  • Putting a smile on my face as much as possible.

I’m a little skeptical about whether #3 will stick, but I’m feeling good about the others.

Stay ambitious,

Caj

P.S. Stay tuned for more regular posts in 2014!

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