Yogi Berra’s aphorism may be funny, but it rang true on December 31 as I pondered the year ahead. “What do I want to accomplish in 2014?” I asked myself. “And where do I want to go?”
Although the answers came immediately, I resisted making any grand resolutions. Instead, I decided to make one small, positive change every month.
I started in January by giving up sugar. In February I exercised every day. (Well, almost.) As the months passed I spent less time on Facebook, wrote more, and gave up drinking.
And you know what? I’m not one inch closer to my ultimate goal of being self-employed and living in Paris. But I’m much happier, a little bit healthier, and generally less itchy (May: all-natural skin care).
Although it sounds trite, making these small tweaks has had a profound impact on my sense of discipline and self-control. Even more surprisingly, it’s been easy: As it turns out, you can do almost anything for a month.
I’ve had some help, of course, in the form of a supportive (though perpetually amused) husband — and a simple little app called “Streaks.” Maybe I’m a bit daft, but I find it terribly motivating to watch those “x” marks accumulate each month.
I’ve also found it terribly reassuring to see that the occasional small lapses happen (*ahem,* big giant wedding) … and that they’re not the end of the world. When you see 20 days of success, it’s easy to overlook the two “failures.”
But perhaps most importantly, I’ve learned a lesson about setting goals: Even the most lofty ambitions are achieved step by step, one day at a time. Maybe that’s how I’ll end up self-employed and living in Paris.
Anyway, today we’re officially halfway through 2014. What’s your mid-year resolution?