Every year I make New Year’s Resolutions.
And every year, I fail.
My resolutions look like much of the population’s – lose weight, get organized, save money, etc.
Each year I start out motivated and full of good intentions, but by February, every bit of that is gone.
This year, I’ve decided to do something different. Instead of making New Year’s resolutions, I am making monthly resolutions.
Inspired by the book ‘The Happiness Project’ by Gretchin Rubin, I made a list of things I might like to accomplish throughout the year. However, unlike her method, where she made 12 resolutions at the beginning of the year and assigned them each a month, I am making mine up as I go.
Some of them I kinda know ahead of time: the obligatory ‘lose weight’ resolution, to be more personal here on the blog, get organized, and finish the girls’ baby scrapbooks (they’re 6 & 8 now).
The thing is, the list of resolutions is pretty long, definitely longer than 12 items. And unlike Gretchin’s resolutions which are almost spiritual and full of personal development, mine are more project-like.
And I like that. My resolutions are like a series of little boxes that I can check off. And if you’ve been around this blog long enough, then you know I LOVE lists and checking off boxes. Perhaps 2020 will be my year for personal growth, but 2019 is all about getting things done, son.
January Resolution: Clean Out
My main January resolution was to clean out my entire house. I knew that I would be home all month long and able to devote the time it takes to thoroughly clean out. Also, I had started cleaning out the kids’ rooms before Christmas, so it made sense to keep the momentum going.
I loosely used the KonMari method of cleaning out. I didn’t stick to her exact order and I wasn’t as strict with the ‘spark joy’ criteria. However, I did use her advice of cleaning out categories of items.
Instead of cleaning out one room, cabinet, or drawer at at time, Marie Kondo suggests cleaning out an entire category at once. For instance, you would clean out ALL of your clothes at once. You’d have to get clothes out of your closet, dresser, storage, and anywhere else you have stashed them and go through them one by one. The idea behind this is that you really see how much you have.
Seeing everything all together in a pile makes a pretty big impact. It really pushes you to get rid of those things that you don’t wear or use anymore. I went through the whole house, category by category: from clothes to toys to holiday decorations to canned food. I cleaned out everything and it feels so good!
We ended up with a whole truck load of stuff to donate. I didn’t count the number of bags that I threw away, but there were several.
My husband even got on board with the January resolution and cleaned out the garage for me! He also helped me load it all up and deliver it to a local thrift store. And he was as happy with the results as I was!
As strange as it sounds, I was able to keep my motivation throughout the month by watching episodes of ‘Tidying Up with Marie Kondo’ on Netflix. Watching other people clean out much bigger houses and messes than I had was weirdly motivating.
I am so proud that I made a resolution and stuck to it. It was so much more manageable doing something for a month versus over the period of a whole year.
Here’s to hoping February is just as successful!