• Deborah Charles-Nelson

'"Slow and Steady Wins the Race" - My New Year Resolutions/Goals'

Updated: Jun 18, 2020

Why I'm making some New Year resolutions...

For a while I've refrained from the word 'resolution' when it came to January, simply because of the masses. There are countless blogs and Google searches explaining why these don't work. But I see nothing wrong with making a few New Year 'goals' that may spark a positive change! The most common ones usually include: losing weight, better fitness, save more money or get more organised etc. These are all great things to aspire towards. So, this year I've decided I will make a few goals, and if I fail, at least I've tried, but if indeed I succeed then it's a 'win-win' all round!

Okay, so what are my 2020 goals:

Let's start with FITNESS AND WEIGHT-LOSS. I honestly feel like I've been in a constant battle with my weight, and even when I manage to lose a bit of weight, it slowly creeps back on me. My weight can be a sensitive issue for me depending on the time of month, but I figured some transparency and accountability never hurt anyone, and I'm sure you've felt the same too, so why not share our pitfalls and triumphs; that's what we call a real journey.

This year, I'm trying to take it slow, after all: "slow and steady wins the race," right? My goal is to try and do some form of exercise three times a week, whether that be just a quick 7-minute workout using my Fitbit® or a full on cardio/weights session in the gym. In terms of eating, January is my month to cleanse and start afresh. I'm committed to try and eat as clean as possible. 'Clean' meaning no processed foods, reduced sugar and mostly brown carbs with fish or chicken as my protein source and we can't forget to drink our water! This year however I will be working in a 'cheat meal' (not 'DAY' because that'll send you all the way back to the start) every 2 weeks just to make this sustainable.

Next up... FINANCES. Okay so I'm not going to go into too much detail here because I am definitely not a financial advisor or an expert, but I do know how to save. My mother taught me from very young that a little goes a long way, and to never spend beyond your means. And this year I'm trying my hardest to put those practices into full effect! I'm not perfect and I must say I do love a new cute top or bag, but this January I'm practicing a 'spending ban' on anything that is not a necessity. I've written out a detailed list of what my outgoings should be, and I'll do my best to stick to it. In 2020 we are saving our coins and making boss-girl moves! Amen!

So, let's talk about FAITH – or more accurately, my relationship with God. You may or may not know that I was brought up in a very religious, Christian household but made the decision myself to give my life to Jesus Christ when I was 17 years old. And I must say that it has been a journey. There have definitely been times when I've doubted Him, felt very distant or even disappointed, but every single time God seems to find a way to bring me back to Him, where I am at total peace. I've realised over years that every attempt I make at something without Him doesn't end well, so this year I'm taking a back seat and letting Him lead. But what I'm committing to do this year is to spend some uninterrupted time with Him daily, which may be just worship or meditation over scripture. I'm also committing to starting and completing a new reading plan on my Bible app fortnightly.

Lastly, we are talking all things ORGANISATION.

This is imperative and really the foundation needed for all my goals to align. If I'm not organised with my time, my finances and my home, I might as well throw in the towel now! So, this year I'm working on making full use of my planner, my Google diary and post-it notes to get fully organised. I'm also challenging myself in the month of January to organise an area, a drawer or cabinet in my house each week to get myself back into the swing of things.

Okay, so we've touched on fitness, weight-loss, finances, faith and organisation, but how do I actually make these resolutions or goals become my reality? And how do I make it sustainable? I'm sure you've heard of the 21/90 rule. Essentially it's saying that if you commit to a goal for 21 days straight, consistently, after three weeks the pursuit of that goal should become a habit. Then once you've established that habit, you continue to do it for another ninety days to make it a lifestyle.

Let's get to the 'How?'

Creating and writing down your goals are great. Making a commitment to start is even better! But in order to succeed, we have to mentally prepare for change. Transforming our way of thinking and altering ingrained habits is not an easy task, so before deep diving into our "#NewYearNewMe" goals, it is imperative to take a step back, clear our thoughts and prepare our mindset for the new change. By now I'm sure you're thinking, "But Deborah, that's great an' all but how do I prepare?!"

I say that the first leap forward in making a positive change is taking a personal inventory: look back at the past year’s accomplishments and shortcomings.

What worked really well last year that I need to continue doing?

Where did I make progress?

What didn’t work so well and how can I improve?

Second thing to do is review your goals regularly.

Let’s face it, if you are not thinking about your resolution regularly, you are not going to follow through. So, a crucial part of succeeding at your goals is realising that you must have frequent check-ins. The more frequent, the better (except when it comes to weight-loss, I recommend every week to two weeks for weigh-in's).

Here’s one way to build mid-journey reviews into your routine.

Schedule in weekly check-ins for the 'bigger goal' to track your progress, and perhaps try setting a daily reminder on your phone for smaller resolution tasks. It may seem a little excessive to think about your resolution or goal every single day, but it is in those baby steps upwards that lead to great changes over the course of a single year.

And lastly, let me leave you with this: If you fall off track, dust yourself off, don't dwell on it, just get right back up and keep charging forward! Remember, it's not falling that defines us, but how well we rise after falling.

"No matter how many times you get knocked down, keep getting back up. God sees your resolve. He sees your determination. And when you do everything you can do, that's when God will step in and do what you can't do."~ Joel Ostein

Now over to you. What are some of your 2020 Goals? Sign in to leave a comment or drop me a DM over on my Instagram @SimplyDeborah

Lots of love

Simply Deborah