January is a season of fresh starts, new goals and high hopes. Many of us resolve to change bad habits, finally accomplish a specific goal, or simply live better lives. Oh, how I love this time of year, so full of promise and motivation!
Sadly though many of us are already suffering from something I call resolution fade…just a few weeks into the new year. Our drive was strong just a few weeks ago! Our hearts were in the right place! We were so confident in our aspirations. What happened? Where did we go wrong?
How quickly the resolve fades.
Because life can get tricky whenever we set out to make improvements, we often find ourselves giving up before seeing success. Challenges we face can make it hard to persevere, our resolve fades, and unless we push through…several times in fact…we are likely to give up on our goals and dreams of being or doing something different. That slow downhill process is what I’m calling Resolution Fade. And, if we don’t fight through when it starts to get difficult, as Jason Selk described in his article about the 21-Day Myth, our motivation wanes and our commitment to our new habits weakens over time.
Somehow we may even start to think we probably just set our goals too high or wonder what made us so confident just a few weeks ago. Eventually the desire is gone, we’ve fully given up, and hope we will have better luck next year.
It doesn’t have to be this way! You don’t have to be a victim of Resolution Fade in 2018! Not under my watch! I want you to be successful going after every goal you set!
Two of the biggest reasons I’ve seen resolutions fade quickly are a lack of detailed fore-thought and a lack of accountability. Resolutions are rarely created with enough detail to help us find success. Plus, most of the time we don’t have good ways to track our progress and keep ourselves accountable. If you want to learn more about creating detailed resolutions you’ll actually keep, you can read my last post. To add further detail to your goals and create some accountability, keep reading as I explain the details of my Weekly Refresh routine.
So what is involved in the Weekly Refresh?
Just 30 minutes once a week, spent in personal reflection and planning does wonders to refresh my heart and mind, creating continued motivation and energy for my goals. It helps me “fight through,” as Selk says, and get me to my goal line.
The refresh is simply a series of questions to help me manage all I have going on in life, including my resolutions and goals, starting with:
- Highs & lows: What were my highs and lows of the past week?
- Lessons & insight: What did I learn from the past week?
- Progress on goals: What progress did I make towards my goals?
- Carrying over: Which tasks do I need to carry over into next week?
After this looking back, I look ahead at my calendar, setting priorities and noting some hopes and prayers for the coming week. It is a good process! It is refreshing, educational and gives me more clarity into my life, heart and mind.
I’ve typed up these questions and now print off one set each week to complete instead of writing them anew each week in my journal. The sheet also lists my values and guiding concept for the year (#SlowDown2018) so I have a weekly reminder of what is most important to me. My goals are listed on separate sheets so I’ll often pull those out to review when I get to the second part of the refresh routine.
How the Weekly Refresh helps.
It takes me about 30 minutes to go through this process. I look at all the categories of my life (my business, my relationships, my day job, my home life, my exercise, etc.) and see how the pieces are fitting together. It is a time to check in with myself and see how I am doing with my resolutions and decide how I can continue making progress during the week to come. I hold myself accountable to the commitments I’ve made. At times this is tough, but it is always helpful!
I started this habit of weekly reflection and planning last year because I had a lot going on…and a lot of hopes and desires for my life. I was committed to a full time job and to growing my side business through coaching, events and writing. I experienced a lot of benefit, including more life-clarity and personal insight that kept me moving towards my goals.
While I missed some weeks, the overall review and planning process grounded me and reminded me of my goals and resolutions. For 2018, I’ve committed to doing this reflective activity every Sunday afternoon…and you are welcome to join me!
Join me on Sunday for the next Weekly Refresh!
I’m tired of hearing stories of the resolutions and goals people set…only to experience disappointment at the hands of Resolution Fade. If you feel your resolve fading, I invite you to join me in my next Weekly Refresh. You can join in a variety of ways!
- One your own: Download the template and pick a time to enjoy your own Weekly Refresh. Sunday afternoons are purposefully slower for me and feel like a natural transition between busy work-weeks, but you can do it at any point in your week.
- Join me online this Sunday: Download the template and join others online as we create Life-Clarity together each Sunday. I’ve been testing this group process out using zoom.us for the last few Sundays with several amazing women and welcome anyone to join us! The next one will be this Sunday (January 28) at 5pm and here is the link: https://zoom.us/j/144269680. If you have not used zoom before I suggest watching this short video beforehand to get familiar with the platform. It’s easy!
- Tell me when works for you: Let me know your availability here and I’ll work on finding a time that is good for as many of us as possible to meet online.
- Meet with a local group: Eventually I’d love to meet with other people to work through the Weekly Refresh questions together. Virtual platforms are so convenient, yet there is something special about sitting together with other people (breathing right there in front of me) discussing our insights, goals and challenges. If you are near Vancouver, WA and interested in meeting in person for a Weekly Refresh let me know your availability here. If a few of us are interested, I’ll figure out how to make an in-person group option work.