new habits in 2017

planner2017

Happy 2017! I am always anxious to start a new year. And 2016 was just particularly hard – and I know I’m not alone. It was just a sucktastic year in many ways. (Yeah, if you live in the U.S., and depending on your personal and political views, 2017 is shaping up to suck even worse. But I am going to try and stay positive anyway and at least put energy into things I can control.)

2016 was my year of zero waste. I started the year with a detailed plan of what I was going to accomplish in each month of the year, but I didn’t follow that plan at ALL. It didn’t make ANY sense to keep buying single use items and plastic-packaged stuff until I came to the month I was going to focus on it. That was not well-planned on my part. The good news is, I accomplished even more than I set out to. It’s NEVER happened before that I’ve completed and exceeded a New Year’s resolution. I think the reason is that it wasn’t something with a set end-date, but a lifestyle change that just made sense to me. It’s not even goal-motivated anymore; it’s just what I do. I love it.

In 2017, I am going to focus more on creating habits and routines. Rather than make statements like “In 2017 I’m going to ____” I am just resolving to set aside some time each week and each month to schedule appointments with myself for specific things. Basically it’s a way to use my planner to accomplish some of my goals in weekly and monthly bites. It was pretty easy for me to identify what I have done well in (downsizing possessions, being more social, going zero waste, etc) and done poorly at (taking time for myself and making time for one-on-one time with my husband). So my goals this year will focus on some of those things.

For example, I want to do more yoga. So every Sunday I’m going to spend a few minutes scheduling a yoga appointment for myself that week. If I plan a set day for something, I’m much more likely to follow through. So my plan is to spend time each Sunday planning a time/day to schedule time for my weekly goals. And then at the beginning of each month I’ll spend a few minutes planning or scheduling time for my monthly goals. I have a reminder written in my planner at the beginning of each month to schedule/accomplish these things, so I won’t forget.

My weekly habits will be:

  1. Identify and plan a new “learning theme” for the week for Hannah. (Each week I’ll come up with a subject or theme for the week, picking up some library books and planning a few activities to reinforce the theme. This is a kind of pre-preschool thing I want to do with her.)
  2. Meal plan for upcoming week (I’ve been doing this already, but it’s a habit I want to build into my weekly planning session specifically).
  3. Schedule one yoga session.
  4. Schedule time for one creative project – either new or work on something existing. Just identify it and set aside the time for it each week, even if it’s only for 30 minutes.
  5. Plan and execute one blog post.
  6. Work on planner spread for the week (with time for these goals blocked out).

My monthly habits will be:

  1. Schedule a “sanity day.” (Each month I’ll take part of a day to myself to do whatever I want! This involves arranging childcare in advance and making an appointment with myself!)
  2. Schedule a date with hubby (I need to arrange child care and make a monthly plan for couple-y time we desperately need!)
  3. Schedule a family day (or at least a fun activity to look forward to) that we commit to.
  4. Choose and read at least 1 book.
  5. Go over previous month’s budget, and create a new one for the month.
  6. Review upcoming holidays/gifts needed and plan accordingly (to accomplish zero waste gifting).

Best wishes for 2017, everyone!

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