February was a crazy month in the Cooks-Campbell household, and so, not surprisingly, I find myself needing to reset my New Year’s resolutions. It kicked off with my husband flying to Los Angeles to photograph a celebrity event. The day he landed back home, it was his birthday, so I picked him up at the airport with a day of surprises planned. The first one met him as soon as he got home. I had asked my step-daughters’ mom if they could pop up for the weekend, and she (awesomely and graciously) agreed.
We had an amazing weekend–we went out to see Hamilton (!), spent time with the family, and generally just had a blast. However, Damany woke up sick that Monday. I spent the first half of the week running the house and caring for everyone solo, so naturally, I spent the second half of the week flat on my butt from whatever he had.
The temptation is strong to just throw in the towel on the whole year. Isn’t that funny? We wait to set our goals on New Year’s, and then when they don’t all manifest right away, we give up and resolve to do better next year.
What happened to the other ten months?
Here’s a fact–February is going to kick your ass every single year. It just will. Because by the time February rolls around, the year no longer seems bright and shiny and all your resolutions have pretty much just gotten on your nerves.
I’ve learned to treat each month as a new year and gotten into the habit of just wiping the slate clean every thirty days. When I drag the old month forward, I feel like I’m already behind. I prefer to refresh and charge ahead with a clean slate.
So this March, I’m taking on the aspects of my life that I want to see the biggest change in, namely my health, fitness, business and house. I need to pile it on to get the kind of momentum that I had when the calendar was rolling over, but recommitting to the goal actually feels more doable than it did in January, because some progress is better than no progress.
If you want to reset your resolutions, grab a piece of paper and do the following:
- Write out your goals for the year–from memory. Don’t copy it over. Why? Because if you don’t remember that you wanted to do it, then you probably don’t actually want to do it.
- Flip the page over and gather all of your to-do lists (or start one from scratch, if you don’t have one). Write down EVERYTHING you need to do. Big, small, whatever. Pick up laundry, eat dinner, take over the world. Write it all down.
- Cross off anything you’ve done already.
- Pick five things you can do that week and schedule them.
- Now pick five things you can do next week and schedule them.
- Now pick five things you can do next month and schedule them.
- Go through the whole list and either set a date, take a baby step, or make a time to revisit it. For example:
- I need to clean my house. I’ll clean for 2 hours tomorrow.
- I need to clean my house. I’ll clear my desk now.
- I need to clean my house. When the office opens tomorrow, I’ll schedule an appointment with the housekeeper.
- Say something nice to yourself. You’ll be more productive if you keep yourself in an empowering context.
- Ask someone for help.
- Finally, do something to fill your bucket. Eat, pee, meditate, or talk to a friend. Crossing this off your list gets you in action on your list, but it also puts you in a better position to fulfill your list. Ever said “I’m too hungry to think about that right now?” Exactly. Make yourself less of whatever that thing is.
Every month, every week, and every day is a fresh opportunity to reset your resolutions and determine to meet your goals. No matter where you are or what you haven’t done, don’t give up. You can always, always, start now.