I realize I say this every year, but I cannot believe 2014 is almost over. Is it true that as you get older, the days/months/years pass so much more quickly? It sure feels that way.
There are only a few more days left in this year, and for me, that means it is time to think about resolutions for next year. Do you make New Year’s resolutions? One of my good friends said you shouldn’t since you are setting yourself up for failure. I heartily disagree.
Without setting goals, I think you more or less ramble through life and often don’t reach your true potential. Just because you might not meet all of your goals, does not mean you have failed — it just means you might need to alter your goals a bit or change your strategy for meeting them.
Everybody who knows me knows I am an avid list-maker. Setting goals is yet another list I make. Losing weight and getting into better shape is a goal on many people’s lists. But just saying you want to lose weight is not specific enough.
Doing some crazy diet is definitely a mistake — especially diets that forbid you from eating foods you are likely to crave. It’s a much better idea to plan your program with common sense in mind. For example, if you are trying to get healthy and lose weight, cutting out processed foods from your diet is definitely a good idea.
To add to that plan, start taking your lunch to work so you are not tempted to make poor food choices when you eat out with co-workers. In my mind, eating out is one of the worst ways to sabotage your diet. When you make your goal — make your plan too.
Another goal for many is to attain another job, or perhaps start a business of your own. Make a plan that has specifics built in. Plan on doing your research and break down what you need to do into increments. If you want to start a business, begin by talking to others who have done so and been successful. Most people are happy to share some ideas and tips to help you get started. Make sure to ask them what they wish they had of done differently. Often you can learn more by what not to do.
There are lots of other resolutions or goals you want to achieve in the New Year.
Is your basement or attic a mess? That was one of my goals for this past year, and I am happy to report, it is now clean and organized. Our attic was one ugly mess — there were things up there that I didn’t even know we had. I reserved two full weekends for the project. The first day Paul climbed up there and began handing boxes and baskets down to me — it took hours.
Then came the long and arduous process of going through two decades worth of “stuff.” It felt like I was auditioning for an episode of that show about people who have a hoarding disorder. Thank goodness I had no problem purging. In fact, the more stuff I added to the “give away” pile, the more energetic I became. You have no idea how empowering it is to do this.
We purchased some large plastic containers with lids and carefully put things in we wanted to save — special baby clothes, lots of children’s books, other special mementos. I labeled everything and Paul vacuumed the attic. He stacked the six containers in the now spotless attic, and I happily crossed this dreaded task off my list. What a feeling of accomplishment.
I say, be lofty when you set your goals for next year.
Have you always wanted to write a book? There has never been a better time to do so.
Do you have a secret wish to pursue painting? Take a class and see how it goes.
First, have the goal of signing up for that class. Always have a calendar handy when setting and planning for any goals — that way you can map out your plan with dates.
I hope you will take a few minutes to think about 2015 and what you hope to achieve this upcoming year. Happy New Year!
Adlen Robinson is author of “Home Matters: The Guide to Organizing Your Life and Home.” E-mail her at firstname.lastname@example.org.