In the past, I have been a New Years Resolutions Maker. My resolutions tend to be some version of the same thing year after year: Lose weight. Save money. Write.
Since I have rarely been a a New Years Resolutions Keeper, this process is a little frustrating and disheartening. After decades of failed resolutions, I finally decided to give them up. I do see the value in the idea of a January reboot, though. In fact, today is the last day of my third-or-fourth annual January Whole30–woo! Resolutions or not, I still want to capture that rush of clean-slate motivation that comes with the new year.
Thanks to Gretchen Rubin and her Happier podcast, I’ve got a new way to take advantage of my January good intentions: the 19 for 2019 list.
Gretchen Rubin first talked about this exercise in 2018, based on a listener suggestion. Instead of goals for the year, you make a list of things to do that will (hopefully) make you happier. Rubin and her sister/co host, Elizabeth Craft, shared their 18 for 2018 lists and listeners all over the world chimed in with their own lists. Follow the hashtag #19for2019 on any social media platform and you’ll see some inspiring and fun ideas.
So, I’ve made my list. It was hard to narrow it down to 19 things, but I did. Then I made a pretty print of it and hung it on my bulletin board over my desk. It feels weird and personal to share it, but without further ado, here are my BIG NINETEEN:
Why these particular things? Who knows, really. Plenty of things I want to do are not on this list, and some of the things on this list are things I would have done regardless. Some things, like #15, are easy-peasy and I can cross them off in a day for an instant feeling of accomplishment. Some things are challenging in a fun way (#10), some things are challenging in a not-so-fun way but they’ll be worth it for the payoff of completing them (#4 and #17.) Some sound suspiciously like my old resolutions (#7 and #8), but they’re on this super fun list now so I’m hoping that my stubborn brain won’t notice the trick. Some are things I’ve been meaning to do forever (#1, #9, and #12), but now they’re on the list, so this is the year!
Looking at it today, this list seems pretty manageable, like I may have set the bar a little low. But I know myself. If I look back in December and half of these are checked off, I’ll feel like at least I was intentional and accomplished some things that are important to me.
In fact, already this list has influenced my actions–I committed to an online writing class yesterday that will help me accomplish #12 and #13. I was fretting about the expense and struggling with insecurity about my writing ability, and I almost declined…but then I remembered my list. Gotta check those suckers off! Sign me up!
Since #8 requires me to blog monthly, I’ll update my progress here from time to time.
Have you done a 19 for 2019 list? What’s on it?