I’m typically not into making new year’s resolutions. I guess on any given day there are several “resolutions” or goals that I could make, January 1 is no different. I just sort of keep these ideas in my head and rarely have enough commitment to put them on paper and actually follow through. One such goal that I made several weeks ago was to read more – this one I did follow through with.
I’ve read several good books lately. The first – A Million Miles In a Thousand Years by Donald Miller. This is a great book to read at the new year, by the way. I won’t explain all of it, you’ll have to read the book, but basically he talks about the things that make a good story (like in a movie). No one wants to watch a movie about a guy who sits on the couch all day watching tv. No one wants to watch a movie about a woman who works 12 hours a day 7 days a week. Movies – or stories – have to have elements that make them interesting and exciting. In this book, Don challenges us to “write a better story” with our lives. What kind of story will you leave behind when you’re gone? What kind of story are you creating for your children to live in? Who’s lives are you touching because of the story you’re living? It goes deeper than that, but the point is that this was inspiring to me. I want to live a better story. I want to “embrace the whimsy” (as the book says). I want to take risks, to love people, to help people, to create a better story for Mikayla to grow up in.
The second book was Simplify Your Time by Marcia Ramsland. Marcia is a professional organizer, to put it mildly. She has written several books about organizing your life, space, etc. To be honest, there weren’t many surprises in this book. I’m one of those weird people that LOVES organization. Organizing projects are exciting and fun! (I know, I know…weird) Yes, I’m late to every event in my life but aside from that, I’m a fairly organized person. Toward the end of the book there’s a chapter about setting goals, not necessarily new year’s resolutions, but just goals in general. Marcia points out that having a dream is great but until you actually commit to it and write it down and assign some sort of time frame, it will only ever be a dream.
Given that I have a new desire to live a better story and the realization that if I don’t take conscious steps toward accomplishing that desire I probably never will, I decided to write down some new year’s resolutions. In an effort to be open and transparent and to create some accountability for myself, I want to share some of them with you.
1. Exercise, eat right, lose some weight. Not because I want to fit in a certain size jean but because I need to be healthy for my family for many years to come. That and my 10 year high school reunion is in a few months… and I want to fit in a certain size jean. 🙂 I’d like to set up some sort of accountability group (women’s weekly workout group) so if you’re interested, let me know. We can write a weight loss story together!
2. Read more. Like I said, this is something I decided several weeks ago but I want to continue it into the new year.
3. Stay more connected to extended family. Calling or writing a letter to grandparents, aunts, etc. once a month – just to stay connected. Also, I plan to go with my aunt to get a tattoo. HAHAHAHA Maybe I can convince my mom to get one too. (If you know my mom, you know this is hilarious. If you don’t, just trust me, its hilarious!)
4. Go to Disney. Great story in the making – I don’t think further explanation is needed for this one. 🙂
5. Be on time to take Mikayla to school!! I’m late every time and it’s only 2 days a week. I really don’t know how it happens but it drives me crazy and I’m sure it drives her teachers crazy too…I really HAVE to start being more punctual…at least to school.
6. Spend Smarter. Couponing has opened up a whole new world of saving money. I’d like to take that a step further. I think about every grocery item I purchase to make sure I’m getting the most for my money, to make sure it’s something we actually need, etc. I need to put the same thought process in to every other type of spending – no more impulse buying, buying needs not wants, etc. The big picture being that having financial freedom means having freedom to help others, freedom to give more, freedom to control my own work schedule so I can continue to stay at home with Mikayla.
I also made a 3 year goal. A lot can change in 3 years so I’m not sure if this is really a story I want to write. But, for now, I think it is so why not start taking some steps. If in a year and a half my plans change, no harm done. I want to start my own business helping people get organized. This year I’ll start at home. Most things in my home are already organized but I know there are a few places I’ve been avoiding that could use some TLC. Then, I want to do some organizing projects for friends/family just to get things going. Then, who knows…maybe I’ll be writing organizing books. 🙂
My challenge to you – read A Million Miles In a Thousand Years. Then, take conscious steps to write a better story. What resolutions have you made this year? Let’s help keep each other accountable!