I always love this time of year. It is a time to think about who you are and who you want to be. It is a time to make goals of improvement.
I am now 34 years old and I have spent the majority of my new years making goals and usually a month later I miss something and because of my perfectionist nature I just end up giving up altogether. Talking to others... this is the usual pattern but I think it is a bit extreme for me because I really want to do 100% and in my mind if I do less than that I have failed.
If you think like I do then read on because I have figured out a beautiful thing that has helped me keep my goals the last few years that I would love to share with you.
I was taught all my life to write down specific goals such as "Work out 3 days a week," "Read one book per month," etc.
Though this is a proven method, I have found that if I leave myself a little breathing room, when I lack the specifics I am less likely to quit.
So here are some of my goals for this year:
1. Read my scriptures
2. Try new things
3. Attend the temple
4. Improve my talents/passions
5. Be creative
6. Be more active (exercise, go for a walk, play soccer with the boys, etc.)
8. Have better spending habits
So here is how this works.
If I am able to read my scriptures every day, GREAT, but if I miss a day, it is ok because I am reading them more than I have before. As I remember to read them more often, then it will begin to be a part of my daily routine which I look forward to.
Another example... I always see these great deals on Groupon and Living Social and think to myself "I would love to try that some day" but then I close the website and move on with my crazy life. So instead of saying "I would love to try that some day," I am going to go ahead and buy it and try it! Why not!?! Life is too short to say "some day!" So even if I only try one new thing this year it is still more than I have done before.
And so on down the list. Life is not about becoming prefect all at once, but growing and learning little by little. I found the following quote on Pinterest which I LOVE...
If I am able to improve in one area of my life at a time, that is better than not improving at all. So instead I am looking at my goals and prioritizing and asking myself when life gets busy "What is the most important goal I have made?" and then taking the time for at least the top one.
My goals for last year were realized because I made them simple. I did not feel defeated but I felt empowered.
As you make your goals this year I hope you realize that these goals really should be about improvement, not great leaps at a time but baby steps. After all, you must learn to walk before you can run.