We’re almost halfway through the year, which makes this a good time for a much-needed reset and jump start on a project of mine – my still-active New Year’s Resolution.

This year, my resolution was to come up with a monthly theme, such as “Decluttering” or “Health Habits,” and then do weekly tasks or projects related to the theme. It’s gone well, for the most part, but I’ve fallen a bit behind lately. Part of the reason, of course, was being out of town recently – and unexpectedly – for almost two weeks. It’s hard to clean out closets or organize paperwork from 800 miles away. But that wasn’t the only issue.

In looking over the list of tasks I’ve completed, and those I haven’t, I realize there are certain types of projects I have trouble finishing. Or even starting, in some cases.  And when I dig a little deeper into the probable reasons, I see the need for something I used to do with my coaching clients.

No matter what type of goal or dream they were working on, each week I had them decide on one task they were absolutely committed to completing before our next coaching session. The point was not only to get it done, but to instill the habit – along with the discipline and confidence – of setting priorities and fulfilling the commitment.

My job as a coach was to make sure the task constituted a solid step toward the goal, but wasn’t so big or complex that it might not get done. I also looked for patterns of what types of tasks were accomplished easily, and what types were not.

So now I need to do that for myself. When I do, I realize that paperwork is my biggest challenge. It can easily overwhelm me – especially since I tend to hold on to everything in case I may need it in the future. As a result, papers pile up quickly and I struggle to get and keep them organized and prioritized. And when I tackle them as a monthly theme or a weekly task, I try to do too much at one time, and then have the added frustration of failing at the task, and usually ending up with a bigger mess than when I started.

So beginning in July, I’ll be fine-tuning my New Year’s Resolution. I’ll implement a quarterly designation – starting with “Paperwork” as a quarterly theme rather than a monthly one, to give more weight and time to it. Monthly themes could then be broken down into “Collecting and Sorting,” “Purging and Prioritizing,” and “Organizing.” And I will make sure my weekly goals are small and specific enough that I am sure to get them done, which should also help me develop better habits along the way.

I’m confident these changes will pump new energy into my projects, my plans, and my New Year’s Resolution. In the process, I’ll likely become more organized and uncluttered in general. I hope so. That will make for a rewarding and satisfying close to this year. And it will give me plenty of time to come up with a great New Year’s Resolution for the next one.

June 14, 2019
©Betty Liedtke, 2019

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