Why do New Years Resolutions typically crash and burn within a month or so after the first of January?
- Do we overreach on our resolutions?
- Do we make resolutions that are impossible to keep?
- Do we think that the idea of keeping the resolution for an entire year is too much, so screw it?
Personally, I’d lean towards number three.
When you make a resolution in January, you are typically trying to do something to better your health/life/family/soul, and that is great. But to make the change for an indefinite amount of time, especially if it’s a drastic change, that’s tough.
And then, inevitably, you give it up.
What if, instead of making resolutions for an entire year, we instead focused on making changes for a month at a time that may help you lead a healthier life?
That is the idea behind the monthly mission. I’m not sure exactly where the idea came to me from, but I’ve been doing it since February, and so far I really like it.
Why are Monthly Missions Successful?
- You get a sense of accomplishment in a month, instead of waiting an entire year.
- You expose yourself to something and give it a legitimate chance of being a positive, and if it doesn’t work like you’d hoped you can forget about it at the end of the month?
- If you fail, you can reboot much quicker than waiting for next year.
- And lets be honest, you can do anything for a month.
How Hard Is It?
It depends what you’re doing for the month.
Some missions will certainly be more difficult than others, but be realistic and give yourself a fighting chance. For example, if you have a big bowl of ice cream every night before bed, cutting ice cream for a month may be a bit difficult. But it’s doable. Believe me. Maybe that month you can allow yourself a couple of cookies or a piece of dark chocolate to appease your sweet tooth but still challenge yourself with no ice cream for a month.
And remember, not all months need to be about giving something up. You can make it your mission to make positive changes for a month too, ie doing yoga 4 times per week for the month. Or drink more water. Or use the steps instead of the elevator.
The possibilities are, literally, infinite.
My Missions to Date
- February 2012–No Ice Cream
- March 2012–No Hard Alcohol
- April 2012–No Wheat and Wheat Flour
- May 2012–Daily Stretching
- June 2012–Drinking More Water
- July 2012–Daily Reading
- August 2012–No Sweetened Beverages
- September 2012–No Ice Cream
- October 2012–No More HFCS
- November 2012–More Blogging
- December 2012–Drinking More Water (Again)
- January 2013–Business Focus
- February 2013–Meat Free
- March 2013–Daily Running
- April 2013–Tea Drinking
What will your Monthly Mission be? Let me know!