Making your goals stick

Instead of feeling like I have to wait until the next year to get going again, I can have a fresh start every 30 days.

How are your New Year’s Resolutions going?

You might get asked that for the first week or two in January, but rarely have I heard resolutions being brought up much later than that. Almost never has someone asked me in February how they were going.

Now we’re almost halfway through the year (wild) and probably for the majority of us, those resolutions are long forgotten. 

I did decide to do something a bit different this year because every year I get really motivated for a few days and then it turns to nothing.

I tried giving myself new resolutions each month this year. 

So far it’s been really helpful. Instead of feeling like I have to wait until the next year to get going, I can have a fresh start every 30 days. And I’m able to adapt my goals for what the month is going to offer.

Monthly fresh start

So on May 2 (I typically will set up my resolutions on the first weekday of the month), I started working on my “fresh start” list. 

I changed my desktop background to something that felt like May to me — I chose an image of bright white and deep purple flowers. 

Then I looked through my recipe books for some new things I’d like to try and made my big grocery list for things I needed to purchase or replace for the month. I also set a goal to finish a book I’ve had since February so I’ll have a new book to read in July when I go on vacation.

And this month I decided to start keeping up with a calendar. One of my biggest issues lately is double-booking myself. My schedule is typically pretty fluid and open, and I’ve always just figured that it would be pretty rare that two things would be happening on the same day. I assumed I could just figure it out as each day came up. But recently I’ve ended up agreeing to several things happening at the same time pretty often and would have to miss out on something because of it.

And while I’ve seen a lot of Tik Toks of people with beautifully organized day planners and calendars, I knew I didn’t want to have to carry around something with me. I made a Google Calendar and started filling in all of the things I knew were coming up. And already it has been so helpful to be able to look at dates and know what is happening when, instead of just trying to float by and get everything done.

Now with my monthly resolutions, some will be just for this month, like finishing a book. But some are starting to grow on each other and continue to form habits that stick — like keeping up with a calendar or drinking more water. 

Motivated to improve

It’s been very helpful to have fresh starts each month. It allows me to always be thinking of what I can add for the next month. It also allows me to reach the end goal quicker, instead of a big push for a huge goal at the beginning of the year. I can try just about anything for 30 days — but at the beginning of the year, resolutions tend to fizzle out in just a few weeks. 

And just because I’ve broken it down into months doesn’t mean I won’t mess up. Each day is a fresh start. Each hour is a fresh start. But it does give me a good amount of set time to try to stay motivated to improve in different ways.

Hannah Muñoz is a regular contributor to The Scroll. She also is the digital editor for The Alabama Baptist/TAB Media. She graduated from Samford University in 2017 and is a member of The Church at Brook Hills, Birmingham.


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