As a [recovering] perfectionist who tends to constantly produce and perform, I have a love/hate relationship with New Years resolutions. In years past, I’ve put together elaborate spreadsheets with seven categories of goals for the year, and multiple goals under each category. It’s intense! Usually I can stick with it moderately well for three quarters of the year and it’s helpful to have it mapped out, but there is always a cloud of guilt hanging over me. So many “shoulds” piling up throughout the year. (I’ve written about “shoulds” before!)
So this year, instead of resolutions, I want to give myself gifts. Nothing that weighs me down or brings guilt, but goals that will bring freedom and joy. I’m going to gift myself and my family in these seven areas.
A gift I need: Sleep. Sometimes I treat this like a luxury but it’s not. Sleep is a necessity for my health, stress level and ability to be patient with the children. My body is happy with 8-10 hours a night, and I need to make this a priority.
A gift that’s good for me: Reading books. I need to make time for this because it’s good for me plus I really enjoy reading. (And I don’t need to feel guilty for making time for things I enjoy!) I want to read all sorts of books: fun books, parenting books, biographies, and soul care books. It’s healthy for my brain and my soul and makes me happy.
The very best book I can read? The Bible. And I do have goals for this kind of reading–the most important reading one can do. For some encouragement, look through my “Read the Bible Series” RIGHT HERE.
A gift that’s freeing: Rest in the evenings. I’m a pretty high-capacity individual who likes checking things off the list, so I usually pack my evenings full of to-dos. But this means I never rest and my entire day is slammed full of productivity. So I’m going to gift myself planned evenings of rest–I will schedule it in!
A gift of something I love: Writing time. I started making Monday mornings my “writing morning” back in September, and I’m going to keep that up. Such a gift to myself: making time for something I love. I also want to add in Tuesday evenings for learning about the craft of writing.
A gift for our marriage: Monthly date-night-in. It’s not always in the budget to get a sitter and go out for dinner, so over the years we’ve gotten better at spending intentional time together at home. In the new year, I want to make a point to schedule a date-night-in once a month. We like to play board games and eat fun snacks and chat.
A gift for the kids: 30 minute 1-on-1. The plan: the kids will take turns staying up 30 extra minutes for 1-on-1 play time with Mom and Dad. We did this last year but it hasn’t been a priority in the last few months. The kids will be so excited to start it back up again. They just soak it up!
A gift for the house: Paint the trim. I’ve been moaning about the trim for about three years now, so it’s time to get it done. Instead of looking at it as drudgery, I need to think about how good it will feel to have it done, and consider that good feeling a gift to myself!
What about you? What gifts can you give yourself in 2020?
Here’s to a new year and giving good gifts!