I’m done making New Year’s Resolutions. There, I said it.
I’m done making a grandiose list of (very specific) things I want to complete in 365 days’ time. Whether it is reading a certain amount of books, losing XYZ number of pounds or saving a predetermined amount of money — I am done. I am done looking at the list I so proudly created when the calendar turned to January in June and realizing I haven’t read, lost or saved enough. I’m done hitting panic mode right when the holidays hit to add one more thing to my plate, rushing to accomplishing the unobtainable goals I set forth for myself to do 11 months earlier.
I am so Type A it hurts my soul to leave boxes on a to-do list unchecked but I am also exhausted. All of my best intentions are not enough, despite my best efforts. It is unfair to expect so much from myself in addition to being a full-time mom, wife, sister, daughter, friend and employee.
My New Year’s resolution is to not make any resolutions. No resolutions, no problems. I am calling it The Resolution Revolution.
I’m not saying that I don’t want to set goals for myself but quantifying it seems to be an effort in futility for me. It leads to standards that cannot be achieved and then I inevitably feel poorly about myself. My goal for 2018, and all the years that follow, is to be a little better than I was the year before and to leave the world a little better as well.
It doesn’t matter how many books I read; it matters that I read. I never want reading to feel like a chore because it’s one of my favorite things to do. I don’t want to finish a book just to raise a number on a list. I want to finish a book because it captivated me.
It doesn’t matter how much weight I lost; it matters that I am healthy and happy. I want to make conscious choices that help me find the balance between total indulgence and self-sabotage. I don’t ever want to head back to justifying an eating disorder. I want to remember how far I’ve come and not just focus on how much further I need to go.
It doesn’t matter how much money we have saved in the bank; it matters that we are taken care of. It’s not about “things” and “dollar signs,” contrary to the beliefs of many. It’s about experiences and all of the things that money cannot buy. Of course we want to be prepared for emergencies and pay off some debt (which we are lucky to be able to do), but all the monetary gains in the world mean nothing if I’m away from my boys longer than I need to be.
At the end of a year’s time, I don’t want to look back and think of everything I didn’t complete. I also do not want to downplay what I was able to accomplish. As moms, we have to celebrate all of our wins – big and little – because sometimes we are the only ones who notice that extra five pounds or that extra chunk of change in the bank.
Most importantly, we need to look at the lives that we are molding and shaping. We want them to see us leading a balanced life and not just living to check off a box. If we’ve helped them at all to become a better version of themselves, we can consider that the biggest win of all. That’s what motherhood, and resolutions, are all about.