It’s resolution time! Many of us will set big lofty goals, and once we realize that trying to start a fitness routine, get more sleep, read more books, use less internet, be more present, call our families more, and be kinder to people might be a BIT too much to try to take on at once, many of us will likely drop all of the resolutions at once and give up, on to February without a resolution in site.
This past year, some friends and I decided that we were going to try to avoid the resolution overload and set more realistic goals. Inspired by a monthly resolution club we had read about, we decided to start our own. Over the past year, the group has gone through a few iterations of how we hold each other accountable and track our goals, but we settled on this way as the most effective: On the first day of every month we each send an email to the group explaining how well we did on our last goal as well as setting out our resolution for the next month. We’ve found it helpful for people to explain their overarching goal and then the behavior they are committing to for the month to help get them there. For example, one month I wanted to work on an overarching goal of being more present, so I committed to a “No internet after 7:30pm rule” and another month, in line with an overarching goal of health, I decided to give up sugar for the month. This year I have started a meditation practice, drank more water, and worked on not interrupting people so much. My success has varied as some resolutions I have stuck with for many months after my original commitment, and others have faded away or been replaced.
One of the best parts of the club has been connecting and reconnecting with friends around the world and hearing how and what others are doing. Some of our group-mates are saving up to purchase a home, working out more, and blogging more, and finding really interesting ways to hold themselves accountable to their own goals. Some of us have used a Tiny Habits approach, with my resolution this month to stretch my back every time I go to the bathroom (inspired by my friend Rithy who has been doing 10 pushups each time he pees!). Hearing stories from others about what has worked, and what hasn’t has been so inspiring and valuable to me, and we have started bi-monthly calls for those group members who are keen to catch up less “virtually”. Through this process, we have helped each other make friends in new towns, support group members who they were going through hard times, and “stolen” each others resolutions when we’ve come across ones that inspire us to improve ourselves in ways we had never thought of before.
If you are having trouble holding yourself accountable to your goals, and want to be part of a community of people each working to improve, then maybe you and your friends want to start a club of your own. Check it out: http://monthlyresolutionclub.com/