It’s finally happening. We’re actually going to hit the year 2020 this New Year’s. Sometimes, a big milestone like this one is what it takes to make people want to switch things up in their lives. Whether you decide on a New Year’s resolution every year, or haven’t since 2000, if you haven’t started thinking of one yet it’s about time you do.
New Year’s resolutions don’t have to be anything crazy if you don’t want them to be. They don’t have to start right on January first either. It’s the commitment that matters. Just start by thinking, “This year, I want to…” and go from there! If you can’t think of anything, and you’re feeling courageous, go ask a friend or family member something like, “What do I always say I’m going to do that I never do?” This may not yield perfect results, but it could at least get the gears turning. You could also refer to lists of common New Year’s resolutions to give you an idea. Here’s a few!
In 2020, I want to…
Don’t overwhelm yourself. Write any ideas that you have down in list form. Revise your list being realistic, but don’t limit yourself. Once you’ve decided on your New Year’s resolution(s), make an official list and post it somewhere that you would see it often, like your refrigerator or a mirror. On top of reminding yourself with your list, start telling other people what you’re going to do in the New Year. Telling other people holds you accountable, and when people ask you, “So, have you been …” or “When are you going to…” it will also remind you to do whatever you planned on doing. Finally, if you can’t even remember all of your resolutions off the top of your head, it’s a good idea to narrow down your itinerary. Don’t forget, it’s perfectly okay to have only one New Year’s resolution. You don’t need to flip your whole life upside down.
If you find yourself dreading the New Year because you’ll have to actually stick to your resolution plan, take a second to think about why. Maybe you’re dreading working out more. Why are you dreading it? Is it because you don’t like working out? Then why would you make that goal? You probably didn’t set that goal for no reason. If you are dreading your resolution, think about what you would gain from it, like being healthier. Then, you can revise your resolution to be, “This year, I want to find a type of exercise that I enjoy so that I can have fun AND be healthier.” This will most likely help you to stick to your New Year’s resolution(s) as well. If you are dreading a resolution because it may be too big, try breaking it down into smaller parts. For example, if your resolution was something like, “This year, I want to backpack across Europe,” but that’s the extent of your planning on the subject, break down that goal. Think more along the lines of, ”This year, I want to start planning and saving up for my backpacking trip across Europe.” Then, set smaller goals from there. Decide on how much you’ll actually be able to save from each paycheck. Start researching where you want to go, how you will get there, and where you will stay. Then, you will know if you can realistically make this goal happen.
If you find yourself being overwhelmed by all the changes you want to make this New Year’s, make going to counseling your resolution. For those living in the NW Indiana and Chicago area, come visit us at Olive Branch Counseling Associates, Inc. at 6819 W. 167th Street, Tinley Park IL. We can be reached at (708) 633-8000.
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