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7 New Year's Resolutions You Should Plan for Now (Yes, in November!)

Photograph by Twenty20

I really love the idea of setting goals. It breaks down the elephant of life into manageable pieces, and I’m all about making life more manageable.

The problem is, when it comes to New Year's resolutions, I rarely assess my plan before January. Which isn’t ideal, seeing as those resolutions are supposed to BEGIN on January 1.

This year, I've got a plan to fix this: I’m moving my resolution brainstorm into the holidays. This November and December, I’m going to outline what I want for next year. What I need for next year. If I want to start the year strong and it's going to take a little pre-planning.

So, while I croon along to Bing Crosby, sip eggnog and wrap presents, I’m also going to be giving thought to next year's goals. Want to join me? Please do! That way, next year, we can both feel like we’re starting off fresh, organized and ready to kick booty!

Here’s a few New Year resolutions I’m planning for now.

Read all the books

That might be a little aggressive, but I am planning to read more. Toward the end of the year, I tend to see lots of “What I read this year” posts. I’ll be scouring those and keeping a list on my phone of what I need to reserve at the library.

Make exercise a daily habit

Last spring, I trained for a 5K, my first run since having my fourth baby. Then I went on to do a 10K. (Who am I?!?) Now, I’m slowing down the race schedule and am focusing on making exercise part of my daily life. I think I get in the mode of needing a real workout for it to count, but instead, I want to set of a goal of merely being active each day. That can be 20 minutes of YouTube yoga, a walk to the mailbox, an actual run or playing tag with my kids. I’m open and excited to just become an overall more active person. I’m keeping a log and aiming for month after month of no missed days!

What tiny thing can you do to take care of yourself better?

Make little steps toward self-care

For me, it’s something as small as taking off my eye makeup at night. What tiny thing can you do to better take care of yourself?

Reach out intentionally

I want to take better care of my friends next year. I want to mail notes. Drop off surprise coffees. Bundle up flowers or ferns from my yard. Send texts out of the blue. My ladies matter, and in the wildness of motherhood, I want to make sure they know that they are seen and they are loved.

Spend less

It’s so easy to add extra things to my cart (the real one and the virtual one) and swipe to pay. Next year, I’m going to live and die by my shopping list. If it’s not on the list, it’s probably not essential. I’m also going on an email unsubscribe spree to save me from being tempted. This is one thing I'm starting now, so I’m ready to spend less and save more come January.

Find quiet

Is that pie in the sky for us mamas? I hope not! This resolution needs more thought, but I’m leaning toward carving out one evening a month where I plan time alone — 100 percent just me. No kids. No husband. No noise. I have to hear myself to know myself — thus, finding quiet seems essential.

Book a trip

It’s not going to be big or expensive (see above), but summer cabins and winter in the mountains book fast, so I’m going to plan something and get on it!

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