I don’t have any New Year’s resolutions. Wait! No! I have one. I’m going to learn to make risotto this year. That’s it. One.
I don’t do diets, though I do go running (it’s my Alone Time. For a long time, I didn’t even listen to music because I just needed quiet.) But I also do things like this:
And I’m organized enough. I’m not a labeling maniac with bins and organizing binders and color coded…anything…but we mostly know where stuff is and we try to get rid of things we’re not using.
So I don’t do resolutions because mostly they mean me, three weeks into January, in a severe shame-spiral wondering where I went wrong and why I can’t get anything together and I’m getting older and I don’t have the energy to beat myself up like that every year.
I don’t think every day of my life is balanced, but I think over the course of the year, things balance. December brought an early rush of kids’ performances and activities, lots of good food (and chocolate — oh, Trader Joe’s Dark Chocolate Peppermint Jo-Jo’s. Think of me, think of me fondly when we say good-bye), and a wedding in the family, and Christmas shopping. And then, a few weeks of hibernating with the family — staying in our pjs until late in the morning (or all day. Lazy bums.), cleaning the house just enough to keep Hazmat teams away, dropping everything to go sledding three days in a row:
I tried to bubble wrap them but this was as close as they’d let me get. #sledhill #snow #cowx #colorado A photo posted by Laura Falin (@laurafalin) on
So ’round about the beginning of every January, I need a little reset. I need a few more fruits and veggies and a few less things made of chocolate and mint. I need a few days of analyzing our stuff, getting rid of what we don’t need, and organizing what we have. I need a few more runs and a few less days watching movies. Not a wild, radical change, just a little nudge in the other direction.
I was able to preview Ruth Soukup’s book Living Well Spending Less — and it served as a great reset button for me. Full of things I knew, but needed a little nudge, or a little encouragement, or a little reminder to practice.
Encouragement to appreciate the life and the people I have in it right now. Encouragement to remember my strengths and the things I love and to work at them. Encouragement to re-check our budget and stick to it. Encouragement to write down my goals (oh. oops.) and figure out how to get them done.
Encouragement in failure (that’s one I need. I hate to fail. Man, do I hate it.) Encouragement to stop waiting for Big Moments to serve and help people and start with those right in front of me, in whatever small way I can right now.
Ruth also tells her own story, which is heartbreaking and uplifting and (to overuse a word) encouraging and inspiring.
And there are practical tips as well. How, exactly, to shop for groceries and save money — even without coupons. A guide for cleaning your house. Simple tips for tackling big goals. How to make and stick to a budget (yes, even for people who’ve been living for years without one. It’s okay. You can start now and it’s all good.)
Living Well Spending Less hits shelves today — you can find it just about anywhere books are sold. I got a tablet for a ridiculous price recently (considering how many library books I returned late, I’m pretty sure I’m saving money now), and I’m totally addicted to my Kindle app now. So. All this to say — it’s available for Kindle, and in actual book form and everything.
And you? Are you a resolution-maker? I’d love to hear your goals for the new year in the comments!
This post is written as part of Ruth Soukup’s Secret 13 Blog Tour. Check out the other awesome bloggers and learn more about the blog tour HERE. To find out more about the Secret 13 Essay Contest and your chance to win a weeklong Carnival Cruise for 4, click HERE.
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And — Happy New Year!