It’s resolution time.
Most people either love ’em or hate ’em, and some people even love to hate ’em.
I’m in the love ’em camp. Resolutions and goals keep me going, keep me looking ahead, working on something, trying to do better. For me, for my husband, for my children, for my God.
The thing is, I get why some people hate making resolutions that they know they’ll break. They end up feeling like a failure when they quit exercising and start drinking pop again by January 17th. They get caught up in all kinds of nasty self-talk that sounds a lot like “You’re pathetic”, “I don’t know why you even bother trying”, and “You’re a special kind of loser, aren’t you?”
I want to tell you something.
It’s okay to fail.
Really. It is. Even you first-born type-A’s (like me). It’s okay to fail. In fact, I’d argue that failing to live up to your New Year’s (Non-Binding) Resolutions is actually a good thing. I know, it sounds crazy, but think about it.
You can’t fail if you don’t try something.
Playing it safe won’t get you anywhere. That might be fine if you’ve already arrived and you’re life is pretty much perfect, but if you’re anything like me, there’s work to be done.
So go ahead, do some deep thinking, some planning, some dreaming big, and set some goals.
But listen to me when I say no guilt, okay?
When you fall of the wagon, because, let’s face it, it’s bound to happen at some point, here’s what you do.
Get up, dust yourself off, and climb back up on the wagon.
You can do this!
Ok, end of pep talk, on with some of my non-binding resolutions.
An Ordinary Mom’s 2014 Non-Binding Resolutions
- Work on getting up earlier, consistently. I’ve never been a morning person. This may be the most challenging of my goals this year. My youngest is 12 months old and still wakes multiple times every night. It is definitely wearing on me. I need to work on going to bed earlier (so hard for a natural-born night owl), because I need a good amount of sleep. Going to bed earlier will take planning and more effort getting things done earlier in my days.
- Work out a reasonable schedule for homeschooling and housework so we can all get more done. I’m a big fan of being intentional, thinking ahead, making a list, and checking it twice. I’m also a big fan of pulling up a couch corner and losing myself in a good book while my children play the afternoon away. If I don’t plan, supper may consist of Cheerios and popcorn, hypothetically speaking, of course. Ehem. And don’t even ask about the laundry. #iheartchecklists
- Plan meals a month at a time. This is something that I’m going to work on doing with my oldest children. I’m going to have them help with the meal planning and putting together the grocery lists, and then I’m going to work on teaching them to cook more of our meals. It would also be fun to put together a family recipe book!
- Teach my children to cook more. Life skill and totally helpful.
- Read a book a month. I used to be a huge reader. I know I’m a busy mom, and nobody would blame me for not finding time to finish a book these days, but I’m not really okay with it. I love books. I love reading. I love growing my mind and expanding my horizons. I love being challenged and learning new things. I want to read more again!
- Write real letters. This is something that I can work into our homeschool days, and it’s such a lost and dying art. People love mail, and we love people, and how awesome would it be to be blessing the people we love with something they love? It’s about connection, which also seems to be a lost and dying art these days. Let’s push back against the trend of disconnecting. Are you with me?
- Get outside more. Fresh air and sunshine are SO important, and it’s become way too easy to stay inside all day. It’s too cold in the winter and too hot in the summer, and I’m big enough to admit that I’m pretty wimpy when it comes to weather. I’m going to work on that.
- Get my Tae Kwon Do Blue Belt. PSA: If you’re going to start something like Tae Kwon Do, you should start before you turn 40. It isn’t mandatory, but it sure would be a lot easier on your body. End of PSA. I’ve progressed from White Belt, to Gold-Stripe, to Gold Belt. Our 6 oldest children are a belt ahead of me at Green-Stripe. After that comes Green Belt, and then Blue Belt. (Purple, Red, Brown, Brown with Black-Stripe, and then Black are the rest of the belts at our studio) I’m hoping to earn my Blue Belt this year. I’m on schedule to earn my Green-Stripe in January, my Green Belt in March, and hopefully my Blue Belt in June. There is a possibility that I could earn my Purple Belt before the end of the year, but I’ve seen those kicks, and those forms, and, well, we’ll see how far I get! (We attend TKD classes 5 days a week most weeks, so everyone’s been progressing at a pretty good rate.)
- Plan, plant, and tend to a successful garden. I always try, at least a little, to plant a big garden. I’m not always successful at harvesting a big garden’s worth of veggies. Ian has expressed interest in tending his own huge garden this year, and I’m going to go with that! Ian has really struggled to find motivation to do much of anything the past year, and if he has an idea that interests him, I’m going to go full-speed-ahead to support that!
- Successfully complete a 365 photo-a-day project. I have a couple ideas brewing, and I need to decide quickly!
- Touch base with my resolutions monthly. I love the idea of short-term goals. Taking baby steps. Breaking things down into manageable chunks. I also like the idea of taking a little reflective time to think and adjust more than once a year. I’m a believer in personal development. As a Christian, I know that I’m complete in Christ. I know that nothing I could ever do will make me any more or less worthy of what He did for me. Trying to do more, trying to be better, at anything, isn’t about earning His love, and it certainly isn’t about earning salvation, that was a free gift. I strive to do more, to be better, out of love for Him. We’re told to do everything we do as unto the Lord. Can you imagine if we really did? If I was planning a month of meals for Him, you better believe they’d be some of the best meals I’d ever made. Doing everything I do as unto the Lord is a challenge I strive to remind myself of often, and it’s one that I fail at more often. But failing at something that challenges you that much is really a success. The success comes in accepting the challenge and trying. Again. And again.
- Add to the list as inspiration leads…