December. The month that brings the happiness of spending time with family, sharing nice foods with them and feeling cosy thanks to Christmas lights and decorations. But December sometimes makes me feel a little remorseful. It is the end of another year, and time seems to fly while my achievements seem to drag behind. I want 2017 to be an opportunity for me to start fresh, and tackle my New Year’s resolutions in a way that is new for me. Just like many other people, in December I often think of resolutions for the next year. Sometimes I write them down and sometimes I don’t. Presumably like most people, I don’t usually stick to them. This time I want to do things differently.
How am I planning to go about this?
Inspired by a book called ‘The Happiness Project’ (by Gretchen Rubin), I am planning to turn my New Year’s resolutions into a project. In the book, Gretchen sets out to improve her happiness by devoting one month of the year to every area of her life that she hopes to improve. I am planning to tackle my resolution in a similar way, with a new theme every month.
My project of new year’s resolutions should help me improve my life in general, and specifically prepare me to travel more. I want to start challenging myself and rise above my average. I want life not to escape me. I want to take control of my future. This project is going to be a way for me to get the most out of myself, to motivate myself and to provide direction. I have read a lot about willpower and motivation and I will use my readings and experience to pave my way to success.
Make a plan!
In the past I often used to abandon my new year’s resolutions because they were too ambitious and I didn’t have an action plan to guide me towards achieving them. They were big goals such as lose 10kgs of weight or become fluent in a foreign language. Without a plan, I easily lost sight of my goals in the hustle and bustle of daily life. I always wanted to achieve results overnight, feeling overwhelmed by the amount of work laying ahead of me or simply getting disappointed when things didn’t move as quickly as I hoped they would. This time around I will be breaking down my goals into realistic steps that create a clear path towards my goal and help use time efficiently. Planning it this way should help me take small steps towards achieving my goals. I believe it is important to continue taking little steps towards your goals, because all of it will build up to something bigger. You need to start somewhere and it is better to plan realistic small steps, than a massive to-do list that you just know isn’t gonna happen. And who knows, if you do have more time, you could always do more!
Stick to it, today!
I also have a tendency of continuously postponing resolutions. Tomorrow, next week or next month always seems like a better time to start improving myself. Today I am too tired, too busy or too anything else. The thing is, when I tell myself tomorrow will be better, I actually believe myself. I completely agree with myself that today I’m just too tired. I then believe my future self to be a super hero who’s going to magically meet all my wishes and demands! Now is the time to start being realistic, to recognise that, if I continue this way, nothing will ever happen. Once again, having a plan should help me tackle this issue. I’ll also need to recognise that even though I’m tired, I’ll still need to meet my targets to move towards my goals.
And tell everyone!
Finally, my last motivation to stick to my resolutions will be sharing them with you! (Not sure how many of you there are, but at least my mum, sister and hubby! Please comment if you read this, because I’ll feel more pressure from a bigger crowd!) Imagine what an embarrassment it would be if I share all of this with the world, and then quit my plans one week down the line… I wouldn’t be able to face the daylight any longer 😉 I believe sharing plans with other people makes them more real and gives you more motivation to stick to them. People will be asking about your progress, and it’s always a little embarrassing when you need to tell people you haven’t done anything… I believe this will be a very good motivation, because I don’t plan on abandoning this blog 🙂
My New Year’s Resolutions plan
This is what my plan looks like at the moment (I might change it along the way if my goals change):
January – Get organised
February – Get finances sorted
March – Get active
April – Be perfect student (preparing for exams)
May – Improve my blog
June – Improve photography skills
July – Practise mindfulness and respect
August – Improve my Spanish
September – Learn about SEO (Search Engine Optimization)
October – Learn about Social Media Marketing
November – Meet new people, and talk to strangers
December – Focus on happiness
For now I wish you all a very happy 2017 full of travel! I hope you will be able to stick to your resolutions as well as I will hopefully stick to mine! Thanks for all your support!