How To Make New Year’s Resolutions That Feel Authentic

How To Make New Year’s Resolutions That Feel Authentic

December 31, 2018
New Year's Resolutions

Photo by Amy Shamblen.

It’s that time of year again when we start thinking about all the possibilities for the new year. Some of us are elated that the year is over because we experienced a lot of struggle, while others of us are sad to toast the year goodbye. Some of us are excited and overjoyed at the new year and new beginnings. But however you may feel, most of us have wondered how to make new year’s resolutions that feel authentic and attainable.

How I Used To Make New Year’s Resolutions

I used to love the whole “make a resolution and following through” game. I’m the type of person who can make a new year’s resolution or goal and 95% of the time, I will keep it. There’s only one resolution that I broke in the past (it was to become totally paperless… this is an ongoing struggle!) and I’ve been very proud that I have strong willpower. But something still hasn’t sat right over the last few years.

I don’t know if it’s getting older and having harder goals or if it’s just the “idea” that people make resolutions in December for the following year without taking into account that they have no idea what their life is going to look like 3 months, 6 months, or 9 months from now. Maybe it’s just the fact that I think we should all be striving to be better at making goals every month or few months instead of just once a year. We should make goals to improve our lives and what’s important to us during this season of our lives always.

How I Plan To Make New Year’s Resolutions Going Forward

Other the last few weeks, I have been researching what top entrepreneurs and thought leaders do at the end of the year. The last 3 years, I’ve dabbled with themes or intentions for the year (more on that in a minute) but it truthfully wasn’t as effective as setting a new year’s resolution was for me. I felt like I was doing something wrong and you know what… I just realized, I WAS!

What I learned is that I did not complete the current year first BEFORE I moved onto the next year. I did not reflect on what happened during the prior year. I would either think one of two thoughts… “Next year will be great” or “Thank goodness this year is over.” Those were my defaults but now I realize, it’s kind of a letdown. Just think about if you do not process one event before moving on to something else. Eventually the event would resurface and you would have unresolved thoughts and emotions suddenly showing up out of the blue. This often leads to anxiety, depression, unhappiness, and a number of other emotions we try to avoid like the plague. So in hearing this revelation, I decided to try something new.

I need to look at the prior year first — the good, the bad, the small things, the big things. It’s all part of my story and needs to be examined before moving on to bigger goals. MK came to the EXACT same conclusion while doing her own research and you know that the universe needs us together during this season of our lives! She’ll share her approach in the next article.

Here are some helpful tips I discovered along this journey to help you as you make your new year’s resolutions. Just remember if you have your own business, you will need to do this personally AND for your business. Do not skip this step. You want to make sure that you are setting yourself up for succes

Von’s Steps For How To Make New Year’s Resolutions That Feel Authentic:

  1. Take inventory of your wins and losses from the prior year. What are you super happy about? What are you super bummed about? Is there anything that you would have done differently?
  2. What did you struggle with? How did those struggles make you feel? What did you do about them, if anything? What can you do about them in the new year?
  3. Is there anything else you need to finish or complete before something else can happen in the new year?
  4. Let go. Remember what happened is over. It might have been amazing, it might have been horrible. But it’s over, good or bad. And after you work through your emotions, sometimes it is best to let the experience go in order to move forward. There are tons of ways of letting go: journaling, meditating, going for a walk, writing a letter and ripping it up, etc.
  5. If you’re looking to set a theme for the new year, consider setting an intention. This intention will guide your daily life. You are starting with a semi-blank canvas emotionally with tons of possibilities. This intention is going to be what you embody and live the following year. You need to revisit it every day so that it is ingrained in your mind. The mind is very forgetful if we don’t remind ourselves daily of our intention. Let it become part of your life and a part of how you show up for the world. Think about how you want to feel and what you want your life to look like after living this intention for an entire year. If it helps, write a letter to yourself and seal it until December 2019. (You see how I missed a ton of steps and this is why my intention never worked. I always dove right in without reflecting on steps 1-4).
  6. Create resolutions or goals for the year based on your intention.
  7. Build a framework and a vision for the future! Your framework will be a guide and resource to help you stick to your resolutions and intention. Stay tuned for more details on how to build your framework in a later post.
  8. If you went through this process for yourself also be sure to go through it for your business if you have one. And if you would like to reflect on your role as a mother, this process works well for that as well.

Von’s Personal Intentions:

Truthfully, after looking back on the past year… I haven’t yet settled on an intention for the year. And I’m okay with that. There are some goals that I have already put into place that are important to me like eating more vegan meals (due to high cholesterol blood results last month *sigh*) and getting back into equipment based Pilates, which I started up again in September after years of avoiding. Health is definitely a priority in my book because without health, nothing else will follow (Ain’t that the truth)! But is better health the main intention I’m setting for myself this year? I’m still not sure. Rather than setting an intention right now that feels forced or inauthentic to me, my plan is to wait. To see how I feel in a few weeks. I believe the right intention will come when the universe is ready for me to see and receive it. And it doesn’t have to come on January 1.

Von’s Business Intentions:

As for the business side of my life, my intention is more simple… it’s “Choose.” I want to choose grace. I want to choose to semi-hustle. I want to choose webinars. I want to choose to show up for my amazing partner, MK. It’s all about choosing what you value and what you want in life. I want this business to help 1,000 moms feel better about THEIR lives and their values. I choose to show up for the future fans of this community and know that you are not alone and I am sending you the best, good vibes over the inter-webs.

Now it’s your turn to build your intention and goals for the new year! And if you can’t come up with something just yet like me, it’s okay. Give yourself time to reflect and breathe and be. But don’t stop. Because with regular reflection and thought the right intention will come for all of us.

Related Posts: A Morning Routine For Busy Moms In Three Simple Steps

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