Why I Don't Believe in New Years Resolutions - Why Focused Habits are a Better Route

Hi Everyone!! 

It's January 23rd, do you know what that means? Roughly 80% of the “New Year New Me” people are about 3 weeks away from becoming part of the statistic that they will not meet their resolutions. Hate to start my first post off this negative but it’s true. 80% is a HUGE number of people not following through on making positive changes – which is not ideal. Why make resolutions and not even get the joy of achieving them??

News flash – statistically speaking, resolutions don’t work!!!

This is why I don’t believe in resolutions. Not that I don’t believe in making positive life changes, because I FULLY support anything that will make you the best version of yourself. BUT I believe we should address these positive changes in a different way.
So how should we make these strides to a better self?


I start out my life changes by making my final goals so like the above idea, a resolution if you will, but then I break that resolution down into sub categories. My subcategories include all the following:

What does it take to achieve this goal: I take this list and make notes of the habits needed to be developed to reach the goal. These can range anywhere from making your bed every day to running a mile every day. Why is this important? Because as humans we love instant gratification. We as a whole want everything as quickly and painlessly as possible. Understandably, of course. But usually goals are large and have multiple parts that go into them to make them happen and stick for the rest of our year/life.

How much time will this goal take: I am a huge procrastinator in life, mainly because my full-time job takes up a solid chunk of my life/free time, so I always give myself a little extra time to achieve them. So why is time important? Because, as stated above, goals are not usually quick and achievable, so I think it’s extremely important to prepare yourself for how long this actual goal will take to happen, so you don’t feel like giving up with little to no headway a week into the new year.

Why do I want this change: this is my favorite part. When I am passionate about a change, such as financial freedom, I am 10x more likely to stick with it. I like to write these reasons down so I can go back to them whenever I am feeling as though I am not following the right course to my goal. This is pretty much your pep talk section, because guess what, only you can achieve the goals you set out. No one is following you around cheering you on every step of the way. So, I hope you’re ready to be your own personal cheerleader.

Okay, so now that I’ve done all of the above, what’s next?

I start by taking ONE habit from each goal. Usually starting with the most basic one and I make a mental note to strive to develop this habit after a week or so. Once this new habit is consistent and I feel it’s become a new part of my routine, I add in a new habit on top of the old one. I keep doing this little pyramid building of habits on top of habits until I am so far in that I’ve already reached my goal or close to it. By breaking it up into small daily changes, I notice I don’t feel defeated. I tend to be kinder to myself when I must start over on a habit because they are so simple and small. This keeps me from failing to reach my goal because I can see the build up to my success.

So, I want to give a little example so everyone can understand my process a little better.

One of my goals for this year is to develop a more “Neat Freak” side. Let’s just say if I can choose between an extra hour of sleep or folding the laundry after coming home from work, I choose the sleep. Unfortunately, I have spent years developing bad habits regarding this. I blame it purely on living alone. I have lived alone roughly 4 years now and have never had to really share my home with anyone other than the dog, who let me just add is the reason the house is a mess most of the time. (He really loves destuffing his toys and spreading it throughout the house as if to mimic snow.)

So, my overall goal is to become a neat freak. If I just went crazy and started ALL of the habits a neat freak partakes in during the first week, do you think it would stick? Maybe, but since I’ve already done that, I know it doesn’t work for me. I can deep clean the house and keep it tidy for a week. But then my focus starts to shift because goal achieved, my home is clean. For now. What happens the first weekend I am stuck picking up some extra shifts and I decide I’m too tired to clean up after dinner? Or I have friends over and they slightly destroy the place? Do you think my non-formed habits jump into play and I deep clean the house again to tip top shape? Nope, I go right back to my natural habitat and say I’ll worry about it tomorrow. Which let me just add, is my least favorite excuse I use. If I could erase this from my vocabulary, I would. It’s such a slippery slope once those words are formed.

Let’s start with step 1: List of habits needed to achieve the overall goal.
  • ·       Make bed every morning
  • ·       Empty and fill dishwasher every evening
  • ·       Put clothes in hamper instead of on floor (seriously how have I made it this far in life)
  • ·       Put shoes away
  • ·       Fold laundry as it’s finished (I am queen bee at wearing wrinkled clothing)

There are so many more habits I could add but to keep this post from becoming a bore, I will keep it short and sweet.

Step 2: Timeline: so, like I stated above, I know my bad habits and how well I respond to change so I am giving myself a longer than normal timeline. Roughly, each habit should take a week, so for the purpose of the list above I should need roughly a month and a half to become a “neat freak”. Again, my current list, which I will attach to this post is much longer and in depth because honestly, I have so many awful habits I need to kick to the curb.

Step 3: My Why: little throwback to my younger days, I was always so impressed when I would go to my grandmothers as a kid (even still so as an adult) because she had a place for everything, and nothing was ever out of place. I always told myself I want people to see my home and admire me the way I admired her. So that should have been enough, right? In this case it wasn’t. Instead it created a small amount of shame in me that I am failing as an adult and sometimes I avoid having company over all together. So, my why is getting rid of the shame I have when inviting people over even when I know the place is tidy. I also want a place for everything, AKA Minimalistic Miki is coming next because honestly, I hate my awful desire to own stuff. But that is another post for another time.

As you can see, I shortened my real-life goal so I could explain it. But the general practice of holding each habit to a week and adding a new one is still how I hold myself accountable. As of right now, I am currently working on the folding laundry and the emptying dishwasher every evening habits and will move on from there.

I know this post may seem a little common sense, but I genuinely believe people jump the gun so quickly to achieve the large goals that they lose sight of how those goals are achieved long term. If I had developed this way years ago, I may be way better off. But I also would have something to blog about, so I guess life takes its path as needed.

I’d love to hear about everyone’s goals for the year and how they plan to achieve them! I am routing for you, via cyber space of course. And if anyone has any questions or even extra tips and tricks that worked for them, I am all ears!

Here’s to the New Year New Me Crew who won’t become part of the statistic!

Keep it up!

*Disclaimer- I have stated this before but your girl is not a Pinterest Perfect individual like most so please enjoy my chicken scratch example from my own journal 😄

1 comment:

  1. Oh wow! I love your take on New Years resolutions. I never made any this year. I think it’s better to focus on better habits and make them realistic to try and change our ways. I’m with you on the folding clothes as soon as they’re done. I will wash and dry clothes all day. But putting them away is something that is such a struggle for me!

    Alexx - https://aestheticsbyalexx.com


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