So, it’s resolution time again. I realize how cliché it is to make these goals on the first of the year; still, each year, without fail, I sit down and make a list of physical, intellectual, and spiritual goals for myself. I have done it for nearly 15 years. A few years ago I also fell in love with Ali Edwards’s “one little word” project, and have chosen a focus word to direct my attention throughout the year as well.
Although many criticize those who make New Year’s resolutions because they see them as “inevitably going to fail”, I feel that the mere thought of wanting to improve yourself is a sign of good health. It’s great that you desire to challenge yourself to become your best you, to become a more healthy, knowledgeable, or relaxed version of yourself.
Where is the harm in that?
I realize that goals can be made at any time of year, but I think the promise of a new year is a great place to start. So here are 5 reasons why I continue to create goals and resolve to be better each year. And, why I am not upset if, by the close of the year, I come up short of reaching my goals.
Setting goals encourages reflection.
In order to set goals at the beginning of the year, it’s necessary to reflect on the highs and lows from previous years. By taking the time to meditate over the past, you see how far you’ve come or you can set your sights on where you’d like to go. Whether you reach your 2019 goals or not, reflection is an essential step in the right direction. Any time spent reflecting on where you’ve been and planning out where you’re headed is time well-spent.
Valuable lessons can be learned through failure.
Failure in life is often necessary for success. When I first started making resolutions, my physical goal was to run 365 miles. Run one mile a day– a very measurable, realistic goal. However, by the end of the year, I had missed the mark by a few miles. I failed to reach my goal. But I didn’t let that overshadow the fact that, in failing to reach my goal, I created a more healthy version of myself. I found a new passion in running. I had a renewed motivation to meet that goal the following year. That failure motivated me to nearly double my mileage the next year.
January 1 marks an entire year of beginnings.
People assume most resolutions fail by mid-February. But, who determines failure? If you fall off the wagon in February, why can’t you get back on it in March? Your goals for the year don’t end until the year is over or you take time to reevaluate them. Make it a point to check in with yourself at the beginning of each month. If you’re not on track, you can always begin again.
You better organize your time and resources.
Goal-setting each year can help you evaluate what is standing in your way from becoming the best version of yourself. Need a more supportive pair of shoes to reach your health goal? A restriction of social media before bed so you can sleep more soundly? A new book or class to learn more about a hobby you’ve always wanted to try? Setting yourself up for success is half the battle to reaching your goals.
Goal-setting helps you focus.
As mamas, we’ve mastered multitasking. However, pinning down your goals gives you an inward focus. We all know that “if mama ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy.” It’s important that you allow yourself time to reflect and focus on your own needs so that you can better take care of those who need you most. If you love them then you have to find time to love yourself.
So, even if by the end of 2019 you find yourself with incomplete goals; the reflection, organization, and “failure” may be just what you need to keep moving in the right direction. It’s never too late to start.
“Fall down seven times, stand up eight.” – Japanese Proverb
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