daily habits

Resolutions…I know, these are a bit late but I figured with the Chinese New Year starting today that I had a second chance. It wasn’t that I wasn’t thinking about them when January 1st rolled around it’s just that I’ve had a hard time this year coming to terms with the idea of resolutions.

I think it all started when I read post over on Zen Habits called, How to Have the Best Year of Your Life (Without Setting a Single Goal) by Jeff Goins. He suggests that goals or resolutions are pointless and focus too much on the end result and that we would be better off establishing daily habits. Goals he argues are designed to trick you into believing that all you need to change your life is a plan. When in reality most of us have a hard time sticking to a list of goals for more than a few weeks let alone a year. Instead he suggests we create good sustainable daily habits we enjoy doing. Basically, making room in your life for what really matters. The key to success is consistency.

I think the other reason I was reluctant to set resolutions this year was the knowledge that I was going to be adding another baby to  the household. We all know that children are completely unpredictable and raising two children while pursuing my own ambitions is uncharted territory!  I have so many wonderful memories from my year off when Henry was first born. There were no expectations or goals I was expected to accomplish other than focusing on my baby and our family. That year off allowed me time to truly discover what I love and paved the path for many of the opportunities I have today. Since that time I have honestly come to think that everybody should get at least one year off (with some financial support) to refocus their energies and discover their passions – a sabbatical of sorts.

 

So, with that in mind I’m going to set out a list of daily/weekly habits that I hope will make the year ahead one I can be proud of.

- Reconnect with my body through yoga, walking, pilates, etc.  We’ve been out of touch and we need to get back together. Physically, we have a challenging year ahead of us and we need to reunite.

- Stay focused on the task. Whether it’s playing with Henry or making dinner or listening to my husband or working on a problem I need to be fully there on that task and not looking at my phone or thinking about the 10 other things I have to do. Less distraction – more attentiveness.

- Read before bed. Not only does this help me fall asleep easier but I love being able to disappear into a book. At the end of a long day, it’s a relief to get lost in someone else’s world.

- Drink more water, eat more fruit. I’m a pretty healthy eater but I could easily eat bread, cheese and chocolate all day long. More fruit and water in my daily life would be a good thing.

- Connect – with friends, with family, with the outdoors, with strangers, with joy.

What about you, any daily habits you’ve added to your life that have made it better?

Image Credits:
Raw Color
The New York Times Style Magazine

 

Filed under intentions

11 Comments

  1. Posted January 23, 2012 at 10:44 AM | Permalink

    I think the theme of my year will be: prioritize. I’m constantly making lists of things that need to get done. And they completely overwhelm me. I’m focusing on all the thing NOT done, instead of celebrating things that ARE done. My goal is to pick 3 things and ignore the rest. In everything. Prioritize, divide and conquire.

    PS. and get a better camera :)

  2. Posted January 23, 2012 at 10:51 AM | Permalink

    and purge. clothes, electronics, kitchen things, baby things/toys. purge until only the things I love are left. even thought I’ve been doing this for a while, I see more and more things I want to let go of. The feeling of space and freedom is addictive.

  3. Posted January 23, 2012 at 11:41 AM | Permalink

    This year I didn’t set any resolution as last years ones didn’t last long…I have almost like some secret goals this year and I’m trying to follow them, but don’t stress about it to much. But there is of course more exercise, food, spending time and money involved…and slow down in everything, work, decisions..life

  4. Posted January 23, 2012 at 11:58 AM | Permalink

    As a rule, I don’t make resolutions. I think at first it was just out of rebellion–my dad used to make us make resolutions as a child and then show them to him. Over the years I’ve discovered that setting resolutions are actually harmful to me. I’m a Type A personality who is constantly trying to improve herself. Must read new books, must clean house, must learn new dish, must master new language. It’s exhausting! Instead, I try to tone it down and just relax and enjoy the tiny moments of life. This has been my resolution since I was 23: Chill.

  5. Posted January 23, 2012 at 12:39 PM | Permalink

    Love this. 2012 is going to be a kick-ass year.

  6. Posted January 23, 2012 at 1:25 PM | Permalink

    @Nat – I hear you on the purging! Less clutter would certainly help clear my mind. It’s sorting through the stuff that already exists (you don’t want to see our basement!) and then controlling all the new stuff that comes in – especially with a baby. I find that people often want to dump their old baby stuff on you because they don’t want to see it anymore!

  7. Posted January 23, 2012 at 1:25 PM | Permalink

    @Kiana – Love it – just chill!

  8. Posted January 23, 2012 at 2:18 PM | Permalink

    I will send you my prenatal yoga DVD!
    This post hits home with me…i have been drafting a note about trying to set goals, and failing…trying to establish some long term thinking and failing…and how i am the happiest I have ever been in life, despite not having a road map to guide me along. you know? obviously I am still figuring out my thoughts on this…

  9. Posted January 23, 2012 at 4:31 PM | Permalink

    Beautiful. I’ve been really thinking a lot about being present wherever I am… with my son especially. It’s easy to get distracted with multi-tasking and being productive.. But like you, I want to slow down this year and enjoy a little more time every day. Great post.

  10. Lucia
    Posted January 23, 2012 at 7:41 PM | Permalink

    I think I have the same points in my list! perhaps in a different order but the same topics!

  11. Posted January 24, 2012 at 3:57 PM | Permalink

    I like your idea of reading before bed. reading is so relaxing for me and i don’t do it enough. i’ve been carving our 2 hours in our afternoon as rest time for the kids, and its such a great break in my day

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