New Year, Better You

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It’s that time of year again. The time of year when we sit around and list out all the ways we need to change. All the ways we need to be a new and better person. This year, however, I decided that I don’t want to be a new person this coming year. I actually quite like the current me: homemade-ish meals 50% of the time, no make-up 75% of the time, hair in a pony tail 85% of the time, and mountains of laundry 100% of the time. I might not have it all together, but I, just like you, have a tribe of people- bigs and littles- that think I am pretty awesome just the way I am. There are people, more than you realize, that love YOU just the way you are, so there is no reason to aim for a complete and total restoration in the coming year.

Every January, we are pressured to make a list of goals and resolutions for the “New Year, New You” movement that lasts, well for a good 25 days, give or take. Instead, I suggest we jump on the “New Year, Better You” train. We are fabulous already, so as we sit down to reflect on what we would like to see in store for this year, set your sights on goals you have that would just help you be a better YOU instead of a brand new you. Ambitions of radical change (like for me to stop biting my nails- a 35-year-long-repetitious-failure) end quickly and result in feelings of guilt and disappointment. Goals that have room built-in for the occasional derailment and are already part of our current routines stick with us, keep us intentional, hold us accountable, and end with success- a new better YOU.

Upon my decision to stay little ole me, I narrowed down a few areas I could still be me but just a bit better. If you need help in writing your resolutions for the coming year check out what I have in store for me. *Disclaimer- if you see me out and about, and I am not following one of my resolutions, remember I plan for the guilt-free “occasional derailment.” Nicole is my name, imperfection is my game!

  1. Be better at saying “no” to sweets. This includes “fake” sweets, like Diet Coke (insert crying eyes emojis). Again, this is just to be better at it. You will not catch me turning down birthday cake at a birthday party. That’s just rude. (Not really, but that’s what I tell myself.) And you will still find me with an occasional Diet Coke in my hand, I mean do you even know what liquid Heaven tastes like because I do. However, I do need to make better choices, so a sweet to celebrate someone, not simply me making it to work on time, and a soda every few days after I have done well drinking water, is just enough to make me a better me.
  2. Be better at putting the phone down. I am restless. Those that know me well know how restless I am, hence why I bite my nails. Watching a television show means me on my phone playing a game because if I don’t keep my hands busy, I will pick at my cuticles until they bleed (99 problems and that’s a big one!) However, I need to learn to just put the phone down and be in the moment. Social media is not a huge screen time issue for me, but checking emails, answering texts, making future plans, and online shopping keep my phone near me at all times. Emails can wait, most texts can wait, future planning can happen after the kids are asleep, and online shopping, well it would definitely make my husband a happier him if I would break up with my shopping apps (and forget my credit card number- who’s with me?!) I always feel a sting of guilt when I am answering a text at the same time my child is telling me a story- which is probably one I have already heard and honestly kind of boring- BUT if I would just put the phone down and be in the moment and be in the story, I am showing my child levels of love and interest that could not have been reached with my eyes on the screen. Less phone time will me a much better in the moment me.
  3. Be better at laundry and cooking. I could stretch this goal to just a generic “be better domestically”, but I am all about attainable, so let’s not get too crazy. My focus this year is to get better at putting the laundry away. I am great at the throwing it in the washer part, semi-ok at the remembering to move it to the dryer part, but downright terrible at the putting it away part! Even from where I currently type, I can see 2 mountain peaks of cotton and rayon peering judgement into my soul. I mean, how hard is it to just put them away as soon as the dryer stops?! Hard. Really hard. So hard that I did not even want to put it on my list, but I am trying to be better. Will it even make me better? Maybe I should move this goal to next year. I digress. The goal stays, and along with it, I want to be better at “cooking.” I have to be honest and put cooking in quotes because my level of making a homemade meal is quite minimal. However, it is important to me and the health (and finances) of my family to cook more meals at home instead of eating out or grabbing fast food. So even if my meals are simple and involve a lot of chicken, frozen steamable veggie bags, and premade salad kits, the simple act of preparing dinner will make me a better and healthier me.

That is all for this year. There is nothing too radical or so different from my norm that I will have to become a completely new person to achieve my goals- and that right there is my biggest hope for me and for you. You have an incredible tribe of people who love you- cue Bruno- “’Cause girl, you’re amazing just the way you are!” Whatever you do as you are setting goals for the New Year, just be sure to keep being YOU! Cheers and Happy New Year!

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