3 Simple Ways to Keep Your 2020 Intentions Alive
Whether you call them intentions or resolutions or just things that you want to make better for the new year, many of us see January 1st as a place to reset and start adopting some new practices.
But these new and better practices often get dropped by the middle of January. In a recent article by 1BusinessWorld, they found that most people’s new year’s resolutions get dropped by January 19th. So, going by that statistic you’ve got until the end of this week to make those positive changes stick!
In my last blog post, I referenced an amazing book, “Atomic Habits” by James Clear, which I really think could help all of us make tiny changes that have big results and, most importantly, to actually do them and stick with them. One of the most helpful things that I have found in the book is being specific about my intentions. Instead of saying that I want to walk more, I say to myself (or even better I write it!) “I am going to walk to my Monday morning exercise class and then to the grocery store. This will give me a good warm up and cool down to my class, save on gas, and give me a few more steps in my day.”
3 ways to make your intention stick: Add a time, place, and benefit. (And if you can, put it in writing.)
By adding a specific time, place, and result, I am more likely to follow through on my intention to walk more than I would if I just said my 2020 goal is to “walk more”.
Another very specific intention that I have for 2020 is to waste less food. That’s a pretty general statement though and hard to follow through on without more detail. So I needed to get more specific and state the benefits for myself.
I usually prepare my own breakfast and lunch and most of the dinners that my husband and I eat together. In the past, I did my online shopping orders from ShopRite once a week. I am very resistant to going to the store more than once a week so to help me plan better and be more prepared with good food and snacks towards the end of the week I made an intention for 2020 to pick up my order one day and then a few days later go back to the store for a small order of fruits and veggies to juice, the food I need to cook for my dog, and more ingredients for dinners.
And here’s the benefit that I set for making the dreaded trip to ShopRite for a second time in one week: Setting a second day to go to the store for a small order enables me to plan better so I’m throwing out less leftovers, I get more fresh fruits and veggies in the house, and I can cook for my dog on a day other than when I cook for us so I’m not spending too long in the kitchen on one day.
So far these two vague intentions - walk more and waste less food have been working since I got specific and attached these new habits that I want to create to other habits that will hopefully make them stick past the January 19th end date that many resolutions have.
I still have some more intentions for 2020 that I want to work towards such as getting a little more clear about setting boundaries in a variety of ways in my work and personal life. Those are going to take some more thought to get specific with a how, why, when, and where because they include other people and that always complicates things. More to come on that.
In the meantime, I’d love to hear from you. Did you set new intentions, goals, or resolutions for 2020? Are you sticking with them - and if so, how?? Or did they already fade away?