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There has been talk that there is no need to write resolutions for 2021, and I get it. People are tired, fatigued from the pivoting we did in 2020, not to mention all the politics and the social conflict. I understand the difficulty in creating expectations that will challenge us further for the year ahead (stretch us past our limits, some will say), but I beg to differ on the writing of resolutions front.
As C.S. Lewis once wrote, “Hardships often prepare ordinary people for an extra-ordinary destiny.”
I have found that the times in my life that have been most tough are the moments right before big change happened. Stead-fastness is what we need during this transition. We need to courage to believe that 2021 holds the potential to be the most amazing years of our lives.
Of course, every individual reacts to trauma differently. Personally, I like to face trauma head on and conquer it (case in point: My Decision to Aggressively Tackle My Student Loan Debt), but even I have challenges that I find difficult to face. However, to give up altogether?! No, that isn’t me, and I don’t think that’s you either.
If you feel like resolutions are a bit too much, just write ONE like I did in 2018, after I went through the most roller-coaster year of my life (which was also the most pivotal!). For the more motivated, try beginning with the end. And for those who really can’t bring themselves to pull out paper and pen at this time, no worries – there is always the opportunity to write resolutions in the middle of the year. Let’s not let the New Year define our opportunities to create change.
I, for one, am excited about what 2021 could bring. My gleaming eyes are looking ahead to a bright future. I’m a dreamer and an optimist, so I wrote a lengthy list of resolutions. 2020 was a year that forced me to slow down. I dissociated myself from my own identity to unearth the real me, an experience that I recently wrote about here.
Each year, I focus my resolutions around a theme. Last year was about self-care in many forms, including taking care of my surroundings and home, focusing on my health, and slowing down enough to give myself time to recharge. In the process, I discovered balance, kindness (towards myself and others), and my place in this world. All of this sets me up nicely for a wonderful 2021.
My focus for 2021 is to make it the year of my most meaningful work.
I feel more grounded in my being that I ever have, and the purpose of creating space the previous year is to fill it as intentionally as possible. This is not to be confused with more work but rather quality work. I am not only referring to professional work either, encompassing work on my relationships, on my home, on my spirituality, and on my self.
In order to set myself up for success, I paired my resolutions with actionable and measurable goals. Maybe you’ll find a few that resonate with you. However, I would highly recommend writing your own first, before allowing someone else’s (mine included) to influence your hopes for the year to come. And if I don’t get around to it, I wish you and yours love and light in the New Year!
My 2021 New Year’s Resolutions
- Focus on Health
- Make exercise routine. Focus on the exercises that are enjoyable, like running, swimming and yoga to make it more sustainable. Goal: Exercise 5 days a week.
- Eat more veggies and fruit. Goal: Incorporate these into meals at least 5 days a week.
- Eat to be satiated, abandon gluttony. Goal: Aim to only be 80% full.
- Sleep on a consistent schedule. Goal: Try to sleep between the hours of 10pm and 6am.
- Wake up at a consistent time. Goal: Get up when you feed the cat, instead of crawling back into bed.
- Focus on Having Less
- Less Instagram. Goal: Limit yourself to 15 minutes per day.
- Less Shopping for both the self and the home. Goal: Spend only $35 on fun money each month. When you feel the need to buy something new, write the reasons why what you have is enough. Wait at least one month before buying something you want.
- Less obligation and responsibilities. Goal: Practice responding with “Can I get back to you?” to give yourself the space for consideration.
- Focus on Creating Your Best Work
- Prepare each morning for the day ahead. Goal: Meditate each morning to clear the mind. Prioritize your tasks for the day ahead, and delegate or de-clutter as many as you can before beginning work. Put on an outfit and get ready as if you are going into work to create that separation between work and home.
- Be on time to show respect for other people’s timelines. Goal: Show up to work, appointments and events at least five minutes early.
- Study dentistry to invigorate a passion towards the profession. Goal: Complete 50 CE units this year.
- Provide usefulness to others via the blog so that I may make a living helping people virtually. Goal: Create digital downloads, consider intentional living consultations, and work on writing a book on living intentionally.
- Create the ideal WFH space. Goal: Carve out a dedicated area in the home for work. Make it a sanctuary.
- Focus on Creating a Good Home
- Keep up with de-cluttering. Goal: De-clutter monthly both physical and digital clutter.
- Maintain a clean and tidy home. Goal: Follow this cleaning schedule.
- Focus on Spirituality
- Meditate more often. Goal: Use the Tide App 5 times a week.
- More outdoors time to reduce cortisol levels. Goal: Aim for at least 30 minutes of walking or hiking in nature three times a week.
- Have more gratitude. Goal: Write the top 3 things the be grateful for each morning. Thank my food and my things for gracing my life.
- Reflect on a quote each morning. Goal: Find a quote that speaks to where you are in life and share it each day with others.
- Spread goodness. Goal: Volunteer once a month. Call three friends and family members each week and tell them why you are grateful for them.
- Focus on Myself
- Make time to read more books, which will expand your knowledge, perspective, and experience. Goal: Read two books a month.
- Learn a language or musical instrument. Goal: Learn French enough to be able to have conversation and learn two songs on either piano or guitar each month.
- Get into drawing again. Goal: Complete two drawings per month.
- Reserve the evenings for relaxation and rejuvenation. Goal: Put the phone away one hour before bed.