Spend more time with the kids.
These are typical resolutions...and are not attainable as they stand. What does “lose weight” mean? If you lose 1 or 2lbs, have you achieved that goal? Weight Watchers sets goals of 10% of your current weight. That's something to work towards, and a specific goal to achieve.
“Quit smoking” sounds great. Are you going cold-turkey, or doing the gradual method? Will you be asking for help and support from family, friends, health professionals?
What does “spend more time with the kids” mean? The greatest gift you can give to your kids is yourself...fully present and involved with them. Ask them what they want to do with you. I sat down with my kids about a month ago and we developed a list of things we wanted to do together, and the majority of the items cost nothing...going to the library, going to the park, skating, build a snowman, go to french class, and then the infamous “sunny gym”, which I have no idea what it is but it made sense to my 5yo daughter so it's on the list.
Then there's the HUGE task of “get organized”. Really think about what “getting organized” and “decluttering” means for you and your family. Do you need to create filing systems? Want to stop the frantic morning scurrying around to get everyone out the door for school and work? Go through the boxes you still have from when you moved 10 years ago? Break down your “get organized” resolution down to manageable mini-goals.
In the kitchen, spend one month going through the cupboards and decide whether you are keeping dishes, cutlery, and appliances because you actually use them, or because they belonged to someone else in your family. Just do it 10 or 15 mins at a time (when the coffee's brewing or your waiting for dinner to finish cooking), and the next thing you know, you'll have a decluttered kitchen. When you are putting away things from the dishwasher, take a moment to really look at them and decide if you actually want to keep each item.
When you can no longer put away your laundry because the dresser drawers/closet is overflowing, don't go buy another dresser drawer or something to organize your clothing. Look at each item one drawer at a time and, if you haven't worn it in a year or two, or are keeping it “in case I fit into it one day”, remove the item and put in the clothing you just washed. If one of your achievable resolutions is to lose weight, pack the smaller clothing into a box or tote, label the outside (very important!) and get them out of your dresser/closet until you can fit into them. If they stay where you can see them every day, they are taking up valuable space and potentially making you feel bad each time you see them. The underwear drawer is the most important of all this...you'll be amazed if you actually get rid of all items that don't fit, have holes (come on...we all have them!), etc how liberating it is. I love that I can go in that drawer and all socks and nylons are partnered up, and all other intimates are ones that fit!
Take this approach for each room in your house; try focusing on one room per month. If you don't use an item, donate it and let them bless someone else's home. I have a collapsible mesh “box” set up near my door and, when it gets full of items, I put everything in a large plastic bag, put it in the car and drop it off the next time I'm driving past the Salvation Army.
Where and how are you starting to declutter this year?
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